Strange jaguar skeleton surrounded by starfish discovered in Mexico City

Researchers from Mexico's National Institute of Archaeology uncovered an unusual 14th century Aztec altar at the Templo Mayor site in Mexico City. A jaguar skeleton is surrounded by shells and more than 150 starfish. According to the archaeologists, the offering was made to the god Huehueteotl-Xiuhtecuhtli who represents fire and all life. From ArtNews:

The bones of these marine creatures make up a stunning 80% of the composition of layer they were studying, making it the largest documented starfish offerings in Mexico. Amidst this pile of starfish bones the skeleton of a jaguar was revealed.

"It's very interesting because, if you think of it, the pattern on the starfish looks very similar to the pelt of a jaguar," archaeologist Miguel Báez Pérez said in an interview with INAH. "That's probably the reason they chose this species but we still need to do an exhaustive review to confirm that this is the only species present."[…]

"The offerings tell us about the conquest of marine regions, coastal regions and obviously the extraction of precious materials," said Miguel Báez Pérez.