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Jaguars are incredible hunters. They learn early that stalking a riverbank is a good place to find prey. But there is a learning curve and here our young cub gets a surprise lesson.

On the riverbank is a black caiman. Caimans are large crocodilians from South America of the extant family, Alligatoridae. In this case, however, the black caiman is a young juvenile and like the jaguar cub, both animals have yet to learn nature’s harsh lessons.

Jaguar Panthera_onca_at_the_Toronto_Zoo - Photo by MarcusObal

The black caiman may grow as large as 20 feet in length. And a young black caiman has needle sharp teeth. The inexperienced jaguar is curious. The encounter is a potentially dangerous situation for both animals.

The young jaguar learns a lesson it won’t soon forget, and it retreats back to its mother. Its mother knows that the tables will turn in not too long. Jaguars are the apex predator of the Amazon, and a full grown jaguar loves to attack unsuspecting caimans as they sunbathe on the riverbank. Click here to watch what happens when a full grown jaguar encounters one such sunbathing croc. But first check out the video below!

This is probably not the last time these predators will meet. Watch the dramatic interaction below: