Izabal Wood Company is inspired by the ocelot, a symbol of beauty and versatility but also of vulnerability. The ocelot is a mesocarnivore, hunting mammals, birds and fish, ensuring the cat’s presence has a stabilizing effect on the ecosystem. A small feline with an expansive territory, the health of the species is highly dependent on the health and integrity of its habitat. While it resides in a range of ecosystems from mangroves to savannas, it prefers dense tropical forest cover with abundant water resources. From trees, the cat stalks monkeys and birds but, unlike many cats, they don’t avoid water and are capable swimmers.
The Aztecs and other Mesoamerican people held them in awe. Indeed, the name itself is a corruption of the Nahual word ōcēlōtl meaning large feline. They are known with certain affection in Guatemala as tigrillo or little tiger. The ocelot, like the jaguar, was believed by the Olmecs and Maya to move fluidly between the world of the day, the living and the earth, on the one hand, and the spirit world associated with ancestors, plants and the night, on the other. This duality likely arises from the ocelot’s comfort in trees and the water, and its skill of hunting by day and by night.