03/22/2011 06:25 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Baby Jaguar vs. Caiman Alligator (VIDEO)

If you play with fire, you might get burned.

National Geographic posted a fascinating video of a curious baby jaguar sniffing, prodding and nibbling at a live caiman alligator before learning a valuable lesson.

The caiman lies still for minutes during the jaguar's harassment, apparently hoping the cat will lose interest.

"At that age, basically [the young jaguar] is just like a toddler, exploring the environment, trying to figure out what's what, and amusing himself," explains Susie Ekard, an animal training manager at the San Diego Wild Animal Park. "You could tell he was scoping out the food aspects of it."

But eventually the caiman loses its patience with the jaguar.


Caimans are relatively small crocodilian reptiles in the Alligatoridae family that live in Central and South America.