Are leopards, jaguars and panthers the same?

NO. I’ll keep this short and hopefully sweet. Leopards are a different species of wild cat to jaguars. They are not the same although they look very similar. The jaguar is larger than the leopard and lives in Mexico, Central and South America (a few in the US perhaps) while the leopard has the widest distribution of all the wild cats but it is not present in Central and South America.

The word “panther” is a generic word usually used in the term “black panther” to describe a black (melanistic) leopard, jaguar or puma. Pumas are sometimes called panthers particularly the Florida puma (‘Florida panther’). Both the leopard and jaguar are also sometimes referred to as panthers but as mentioned they are different species of animal.

That’s it. I am not going to waffle to try and fill up the page to try and please Google.

Useful tag. Click to see the articles: Cat behavior

Note: sources for news articles are carefully selected but the news is often not independently verified.

Michael Broad

Hi, I'm a 74-year-old retired solicitor (attorney in the US). Before qualifying I worked in many jobs including professional photography. I love nature, cats and all animals. I am concerned about their welfare. If you want to read more click here.

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  1. September 23, 2019

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