Jaguar, large cat (Panthera onca) found in Mexico and Central and South America. The jaguar's coat bears black spots arranged in rosettes on a background varying from white to yellow. It lives in thick cover in forests or swamps. Though they are accomplished swimmers, jaguars hunt mostly on the ground or in trees. Adult males stand about 2.5 ft (76 cm) tall at the shoulder and weigh about 200 lb (90 kg).