It’s the jaguar’s fault. I’m bopping along tonight, double-checking the finished big-cat eBook text and adding some pictures — and this Pleistocene fossil jaguar strolls into the picture (the above, of course, by Tambako the Jaguar, CC BY-ND 2.0, is a modern jaguar)!
I did not see mention of this P. onca augusta in any of the sources I’ve used, and on double-checking just now, I see that the discovery, from a renowned US paleontologist, was from the 1970s. There don’t seem to be a lot of papers published about it recently, per Google Scholar, but there are some.
Just want to take a little extra time here and see how this fits into the picture — it certainly doesn’t upset anything that’s already written, but it would kind of cool to be able to say something about North American jaguar fossils, since this is the New World’s only native big cat. All that I was aware of were from Eurasia.
Also, you have to be a little careful when looking at fossil cats — even the experts say that family Felidae is really difficult to study. There have been many studies and many species identifications down through the last couple of centuries — some of these IDs have ‘stuck to the wall,’ so to speak, and many others are no longer in use.
Not sure where this ancient kitty comes in and want to get it right for the book. If there weren’t a major holiday this week, I’d still easily get the book out Friday, but now . . . well, best to just not worry about the milestone and concentrate on putting out the best possible information.
If it doesn’t get up on Friday, look for it over the weekend for sure.
In the meantime, Happy Thanksgiving! And an especial thanks to all of my readers.
Hope you’ll enjoy this lovely series of feast-related adventures that Simon’s Cat has had!