Inca Jaguar Drinking Cup
Dating from the mid-16th to early 19th century, this wooden jaguar is an Inca qero, or ceremonial drinking cup, from Cusco, Peru. The jaguar embodied the fearless warrior in the highly stratified Inca society.
The United States-Mexico border region is home to many endangered birds and animal species, including various owls, Mexican Gray Wolves, Black Bears, cougars and jaguars, whose inherent need to move around over a large area is essential to their long-term survival. According to persons who are knowledgeable about biological diversity, the jaguars living today in southern Arizona probably came over the border from Mexico. Similarly, “Mexican Gray Wolves, Peninsular Bighorn Sheep and other endangered species need to cross and re-cross their borderland habitat often,” observes Michael Finkelstein, director of the Tucson, Arizona-based Center for Biological Diversity. “A manmade physical barrier that separates Mexico from the southwestern United States would crush the ability of these creatures to survive.” The border region is an extraordinary source of biological diversity because it is shaped by a variety of ecological forms, including deserts, forests, plains, mountains and river valleys.