Photo credit: Ronald Plett

Rare Predator Found In Arizona

By Andrew Gillett

A former bowhunter and trail camera enthusiast from Southern Arizona has captured footage of a spotted cat on US soil for the first time in two years. Jason Miller shared two videos on his YouTube channel (@JasonMillerOutdoors) of an Ocelot roaming Southern Arizona. The footage was recorded in the Huachuca Mountains just North of the Mexican border. He previously recorded footage of what he believes is the same cat in 2021. This Ocelot has been spotted in the US a handful of times dating back 11-12 years. Based on the age of the animal, and the fact that it is the only known Ocelot to frequent the US, Jason feels this may be last footage of the endangered species on American soil for many years.

Capturing this footage is another milestone for Jason in his pursuit to capture footage of a Jaguar crossing into the US, a quest that began five years ago. After the Arizona Game and Fish Department (AZGFD) issued a broadly worded ban on trail cameras for hunting, Jason decided to forego his passion of bowhunting to focus more fully on capturing videos. He currently spends close to 150 days per year setting, checking, and posting videos from his cameras on YouTube. He is yet to capture video of a Jaguar, but capturing this spotted cat was a fulfilling by-product of his efforts. For this video and hundreds more be sure to check out his YouTube channel “Jason Miller Outdoors.”

When he asked what he hoped sharing his videos could accomplish, Jason said he felt this was an example of the great contributions that hunters with the right tools, including trail cameras, can make to conservation. He feels that the ban on trail cameras has reduced the amount of knowledge hunters have about their quarry and the days that families spend in the field. Simply put, Jason believes that hunters and trail cameras can co-exist to benefit conservation.

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