One hundred and fifty million years ago, Central America and the Caribbean did not exist. As a result of the shifting of continental plates, tropical islands and the isthmus travelled from their origins in the Pacific to their current resting place. Spirits of the Jaguar tracks this epic journey, telling many tales of natural adventure and describing exotic wildlife. Humming birds and hurricanes. iguanas and ice ages, parrots and pyrotechnics, all these and more feature in the history of these most colourful of areas.
Despite suffering some of the worst excesses of colonization during their history, the Caribbean and Central America continue to be two of the richest and most exciting wildlife habitats in the world, teeming with thousands of unique species.
Any account of the two regions would be incomplete without mention of the history of their peoples. In the Caribbean the peaceful Taino developed in isolation, while in Central America nomadic bands of mammoth hunters gradually evolved over the space of a few millennia into the people of the Maya and Aztec civilizations, two of the greatest cultures in history. All three cultures were destroyed by the arrival of European invaders, led by Christopher Columbus.
Illustrated throughout with magnificent photographs, this book accompanies the television series Spirits of the Jaguar. It provides a dramatic account of the creation of the Caribbean Islands and Central America, the wildlife of these two regions, and the history of their early peoples.