Eastern cougar is officially extinct, government says

However, turns out there never was such an animal distinct from the Western cougar-

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service this week said  the eastern cougar was extinct, and said it should be taken off the endangered species.

However, it turns out most think the Eastern cougar was a distinction that made no difference because there never was a kind of cougar or mountain lion in the East any different from the increasingly common cougar of the Western United States which is reclaiming its territory in the Midwest and the East at a pretty good rate.

The debate between “lumpers” and “splitters” has been common among biologists studying species and sub-species.  A lumper would say the so-called “eastern cougar never did differ significantly from other cougar in the United States.  A similar controversy has of course been part of the restoration of the gray wolf to the Western United States, the Great Lakes and the red wolf of the Carolinas. The latter is very similar to the wolves of eastern Canada in Quebec Province.

U.S. Declares Eastern Cougar Extinct, With an Asterisk. By Felicity Barringer. New York Times.






  1. Phil Avatar

    I had read that the “Eastern cougar” had been extinct for some time now. There were recent sightings of a few cougars that had been taped around Virginia, Carolinas and West Virginia that shocked biologist. I believe species eventually migrate back to their historic ranges if given time, as is possibly the case with the few sightings in the atlantic region. Names of the cougars, similar to some wolves, are given due to the geological range of the species. Really, what is so different from the Florida panther and Western cougar?

  2. SEAK Mossback Avatar
    SEAK Mossback

    The cougar is one of the most well distributed animals – about the only North American mammal I can think of that is native all the way to Tierra del Fuego in South America. They are showing up in recent years in this area — have now been reported in the vicinity of almost all of the larger rivers and passes coming out of B.C. — Alsek, Taku, Stikine, on Revillagigedo and Mitkof Islands and around Skagway. My assistant had a hair-raising experience camping deep in the boonies on Cripple Creek near the US/Canada boundary far up the Unuk River (Old Groaner’s 1930’s haunt from the true epic suspense story “The Moaning Maurader of Cripple Creek” by Handlogger Jackson) — a long, piercing scream beyond any human capability followed by three loud “tongue cracks” right outside the tent at 3 a.m. It’s a major brown bear stream but I have to think that short of Sasquatch, the only plausible explanation was a cougar.

    1. Ralph Maughan Avatar

      The ability of the cougar to roam to widely is precisely why there never was an Eastern Cougar.

    2. WM Avatar

      If you have ever heard a cougar scream in close proximity it will change your perception of “being aware of your surroundings” in the wild forever.

      In many years outdoors in the Western states, including AK, and Canada I have only seen 2 cougars, but am certain many, many more have seen me.

      1. Ralph Maughan Avatar


        As you know, there are lot more cougar in Idaho than there are wolves, but they are silent, secretive, and kill their prey with less flair, pull it out of the way and try to bury it.

      2. Savebears Avatar

        The scream of a cougar is one of the scariest sounds you will ever hear, it will make the hair on your next stand on end, and completely destroy your confidence level when in the woods! The first time I heard it, I was 12 years old, hunting deer in OR. The cat was across a meadow from me, I saw it, then it just disappeared and then screamed! Still sends chills down my back thinking back!

      3. Daniel Berg Avatar
        Daniel Berg


        Five years ago I was about 10 miles outside of Curlew, WA near the Canadian border and I heard a cougar screech while in the woods around dusk. I felt like a coward for being so unnerved by it.

      4. Savebears Avatar


        I have spent most of my life either in the woods, or in the army, much of it in combat and I am not ashamed when a cougar screams and it scares the crap out of me..

      5. jon Avatar

        I’m a little surprised sb. I remember you telling me you weren’t afraid when you were in the military, but you are scared of a cougar screaming. hmmm that’s interesting. Have you ever shot a cougar?

      6. Savebears Avatar


        Fear and respect is two different things, and the scream of the cougar is one of the most chilling sounds you will ever hear…

        Understanding and controlling fear is a learned experience, at 12 years old, I had not had a lot of experience..

        Of course you would know that if you had been exposed to it, so don’t be surprised…

      7. Savebears Avatar

        I have never actively hunted cougars, but yes, I have shot two in the last 40 years, one was just a couple of years ago, it was stalking two little girls that were out playing in the yard at a friends of mines house…

        You may not agree, but cougars will actually stalk/hunt humans..

      8. Elk275 Avatar

        I have had mountain lions stalk me while elk hunting, something that I was not aware of until I started back and came across their tracks in my tracks. I have never been scared or worried about mountain lions. One must always wondered how many times he is stalked in the summer and dry months and never knows that a stalker is on the prowl.

      9. Phil Avatar

        WM: A scream from a cougar is not the most beautiful sound, but as you stated, it will change the perception of being aware of your surroundings. A wolf’s howl is thought of as always being alarmed of your surroundings, but a cougar’s scream goes beyond just being alarmed. When I first heard the scream I was not aware of what it was until the biologist I was with mentioned it to me. It is absolutely amazing, but incredibly freightening. A lion’s roar vibrates the ground, but a cougar’s scream will scare just about anyone.

    3. Paul White Avatar
      Paul White

      @ Save Bears: I went to Clear Creek High School in Idaho SPrings Colorado. I never met the kid that got ate by a cougar (before I lived there) but itw as, even a decade later, still very much in the collective mind.
      I’ve seen 2, perhaps 3 cougars; once in the Big Bend region of TX, once in the rockies (in my yard) and once was a probable but not certain. I understand what you mean. Jeez, they make you realize you’re possibly a meal. I mean, they’r ehardly slavering at the thought of human flesh by any stretch and I hate the hysteria they engender but they can and will eat us sometimes–even if they’re healthy and we’re at the prime of our life. I mean, in the 10 years I lived in the rockies, more people were murdered in denver in any given year than were kille dby cougar in the whole decade, and so I don’t want ot make it sound like they’re osmething you have to be terrified of…but you have to realize what they are and that they don’t view as some untouchable diety either.

  3. Savebears Avatar

    The designation “Eastern Cougar” is based on geography, and not biology..

  4. Paul White Avatar
    Paul White

    This isn’t an animal that can be isolated by a minor mountain range or a large river…cougars can range far and wide. So I’m doubtful about the validity of an “eastern” subspecies. And yeah, cougars are reclaiming territory pretty well so I’m not too broken up.

    I’m a lumper who believes in subspecies myself–I like there to be a damn good reason to regard organisims as different species but I’m fine with subspecific recognition of populations with measurable distinctions (be they geneotypical or phenotypical).

  5. Jon Way Avatar

    Given the controversies associated with wolves and the confusion of wolf/coyote hybrids in the Northeast, I would like to see cougars reintroduced to the Northeast so we can once again have an apex predator in those parts of North America. The eastern coyote/coywolf is an important predator there but is no where near the apex predator that we need…

    1. william huard Avatar
      william huard

      I have a few close friends that are wildlife biologists in Central Mass who have both told me that there is a resident population of cougars in the Quabbin watershed area, which is an ecosystem of it’s own.

      1. jon Avatar

        I agree that some cougars should be reintroduced. We owe it to these animals because they became extinct at the hands of us humans. I’m sure you would get the usual bitching from those special interest groups if we reintroduced some cougars into the east.

      2. Jon Way Avatar

        there have been sightings there and a documented scat, but that is scant evidence of a population compared to an individual(s) of unknown (captive?) origin. I wish they were there but I do agree with the USFWS that there would have to be more documentation (like road kills) if there really was a pop.
        I do believe there is habitat if they just got back there…

      3. william huard Avatar
        william huard

        I have been to Quabbin several times, a truly beautiful area. There are many eagles there, something that was absent from that area for decades.

      4. jon Avatar

        William, they should also reintroduce a small population of wolves into your state. I’d love a couple of wolves in my state as well.

      5. Paul White Avatar
        Paul White

        I highly doubt enough captive cougars have been released to form a real population…I know it’s the fashion to blame exotic animal owners for stuff like that now but really…
        It’s much more plausible that some of these animals moved in from Canada or something.

    2. Phil Avatar

      Jon Way: I believe eventually cougars will take territory in the far east of the country. As I stated before, species will eventually find their way back to their prehistoric ranges that mankind pushed them away from. It is a instinctive behavior for territory.

      1. Jon Way Avatar

        I agree, and hope so. However, I am concerned about individual states not encouraging a natural return of a very similar animal. That is why I don’t like this ruling of taking them off the act – unless their is federal protection for them in areas like the east where they currently don’t live (at least in terms of populations).

  6. Steve C Avatar
    Steve C

    Why not keep them listed as endangered? Does this make it legal to kill any dispersing cougar passing through the northeast?

    1. Ralph Maughan Avatar

      Steve C

      It will depend on each state’s laws.

    2. Phil Avatar

      Probably not, but as Ralph mentioned, it would depend on the state. A cougar was shot and killed in Chicago, another in Atlanta and another in a southern big city. I don’t know if these were cougars who were pets to someone or not, but the Chicago cougar was said to have traveled from Wisconsin. Even though there was no threat from the cougar to the humans officials determined that eventually he may attack so they shot each of them. There is video of the Chicago and Atlanta ones on youtube. I wish authorities would have used better management of the situation rather then just the easy and quick one, but you can’t do anything about it anymore.

  7. Mtn Mama Avatar
    Mtn Mama

    My father saw a cougar while turkey hunting around the Monongahela National Forest in West Virgina. He has also heard of many locals who have had credible sightings. It is perfect cougar habitat- abundunt prey, thick wooded forests and low human populations.
    If I understand correctly, male cougars are the primary dispersers and female cougars tend to stay close to their home range; which would explain why the cougar population there is not increasing much.

  8. Mooseboy Avatar

    Save the cougars! I would love to see them reintroduced into their former eastern range.

    Also, in the article it mentions “There was a general attitude back in the late 1700s and early 1800s that any predator was a bad predator and some were created worse than others and cougars were among the worst,” Dr. McCollough said.
    Unfortunetly, it looks like some of our politicians are wanting to revert back to those times.

    1. Phil Avatar

      There have been a good amount of cougar sightings in the UP of Michigan possibly migrating from Canada. The UP and norther portion of the glove is prime habitat for a predator like a cougar.

      Mooseboy: I agree with you 100% in that some politicians are reverting back to prehistoric thinkings about cougars and other apex predators.

    2. ProWolf in WY Avatar
      ProWolf in WY

      If cougars were reintroduced anywhere in the east the Boundary Waters would be the ticket. They could disappear pretty easily.

  9. Ralph Maughan Avatar

    WordPress went down for about 30 minutes in case your comments stalled.


    1. jon Avatar

      Ralph, I was having problems getting on here a few hours ago. The website would show up, but you couldn’t see the recent comments that are posted on the right of this website when you come here.

      1. Ralph Maughan Avatar

        jon and all,

        Hopefully in about a week we will be moving to our own server and this blog will have a new look and new capabilities.

      2. Elk275 Avatar

        Ralph, thanks for the forum. It might be wise to pass the hat, not everybody could or would want to donate , but this blog does cost you money

      3. Kayla Avatar

        Ralph, Yes Thanks to the Forum. I would also gladlly donate
        some money to keep this forum alive and going and to help
        you out. And Ralph, Thanks for all that you do!

        Have a Great Day! Wishing You the Best!

  10. Kayla Avatar

    Personally do have to disagree with this and do think that
    there are some Cougars left in the East. It seems that TPTB
    have wanted to declare the Cougar extinct in the east for
    years and refuse to see any evidence to the contrary. And
    there is no scientific basis to this, the Eastern Cougar in my
    opinion. In all my years of hiking, I have only seen several
    cougars and also only several wild cats. All of the wild
    species of cats are sooooo extremely secretive that often
    the only thing that one will find are the tracks and sign. GO
    COUGAR! Have a Good Day!

    1. Kayla Avatar

      By what I was saying above in case someone gets
      confused. Do think that the Eastern Cougar and the
      Western Cougar is the same animal as it seems many
      others here think.

  11. Carl Avatar

    Twenty five years ago when I was living in Arkansas, 2 cougars were hit by automobile within a year of each other. One of the animals was declawed and the other was a South American subspecies of cougar. Indicating that both had come from captivity. There were no laws prohibiting having cougars and other large cats as pets. Unfornately when people didn’t consider them cute anymore they would be released into the woods.

  12. ajax Avatar

    Subspecies are indeed a tricky concept within biology; it is much easier to delimit subspecies when populations within a species have been isolated from one another long enough to exhibit genetic differences (and even then, there is no set standard on “how different is different enough” to warrant an official taxonomic differentiation. Sometimes, of course, genetic differences are so vast and/or with qualitatively unique alleles such that it is clear and apparent that taxonomic splitting in warranted. But when dealing with very similar organisms, particularly when species status is not in doubt and the question becomes that of subspecies, it can become much more subjective, especially in cases in which the only difference is allelic frequency). The cougar is a wide ranging animal that had a contiguous range, and as people here have already commented, much subspecific classification has been based mainly or even solely on geography.

    Cougars have indeed been showing up further and further east, and several states on the west bank of the Mississippi have had confirmed wild cougars within their borders. I believe that most of these confirmed cougars, if not all, have been young males (please correct me if I’m wrong about this) dispersing away from territories further west held by big, dominant tom cougars, and following the white-tailed deer buffet. Most confirmations have unfortunately been made by corpses, and genetic work revealed several to have come from either the Black Hills of South Dakota, or western Texas.

    Regarding cougars east of the Mississippi (excepting Florida), have there been any authenticated instances of wild cougars in recent years? This question is not meant as disbelief or a challenge to people who have posted that they or a family member have seen cougars in the East, I am merely wondering if there have been any cougar sightings/corpses in the East officially confirmed and recognized by authorities as wild cats.

    I am curious where possible cougars living in Eastern states would have come from. Currently, the regrowth of forests and huge deer (and raccoon, rabbit, etc.) populations in many eastern states could easily conceal and sustain cougars. It is therefore not difficult for me to believe that a few cougars could survive in the forests of present day Pennsylvania, Vermont, North Carolina, West Virginia, etc.; my quandary is how they got there, and I’d be very interested in peoples’ views on this.

    I used to live in Pennsylvania, a major hot bed of cougar sightings (but also, a state in which the real question is easily muddled; it is still widely believed in some circles that the PA state wildlife agencies secretly reintroduced cougars and continues to deny it; conversely, the state’s position is clearly laid out that no cougars exist in PA and this, coupled with wildlife officials who have seen too many “cougar photos” of house house cats, coyotes, and bobcats, causes most state wildlife officials to automatically dismiss any cougar report from any layman).

    Using PA as a point of reference, the state is heavily forested and has the largest deer population in the country, so it is not at all difficult to believe that a few cougars could survive there avoiding “official” detection. However, I do not think that even a remnant population of cougars could have survived the 19th century in that state; by the late 1800s, virtually the entire state had been deforested, and deer were so scarce (nearly extirpated from the state that currently has almost 2 million white tails!) that they had to be reintroduced! On top of almost complete elimination of habitat and food, the official policy on cougars was extermination, pursued aggressively on all fronts.

    I don’t think PA is unique among eastern states in the pattern of near state-wide habitat destruction, elimination of viable prey populations, and aggressive policies of destroying every last cougar (and wolf).

    Are there areas of the Eastern US in which it is reasonable to believe that a relic cougar population may have persisted? I’d be interested to know where such refuges have existed and based on this, where one would expect authentic cougar sightings to be most likely.

    The other two options of the origins of cougars in Eastern states is long range dispersal and captive specimens that were turned loose.

    Individual cougars determined to be of wild origin have been confirmed in Illinois, Wisconsin, Michigan, and even Indiana (1 confirmation), so dispersers turning up further east in Appalachia or the Northeast is becoming increasingly likely as time goes on. I find the prospect of any reproducing populations in such areas far less likely (unfortunately), but would like to know other folks’ thoughts and insights into this. I believe that there have been confirmed cougars in eastern Canada in the past decade, but most turned out to be South American genotypes, and therefore released captive cats.

    Whether an illegally released cougar would both survive and avoid obvious human detection would depend, I suppose, on the circumstances of that animal.

    Please let me know your thoughts, particularly on “wild refuges” that could have sustained a small relict cougar population through the era of mass habitat and wildlife destruction.

    Finally, an admission that even under the harshest circumstances, big predators sometimes somehow manage to survive. There are urban (at least suburban) leopards in the areas around Nairobi, Kenya as well as in and around certain cities in India. And in Italy, wolves still survive in nearly completely human-modified regions in which red deer and roe deer had been all but eliminated.

    1. Ralph Maughan Avatar

      Thanks for the detailed comment, Ajax.

      Welcome to the blog.


    2. JB Avatar

      I can’t speak to idea of wild refuges for cougars in the east, but I know there have been several confirmed sightings in Minnesota and, more recently, Wisconsin. It seems to me that cougars from the Black Hills population could eventually repopulate northern Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan, much as wolves have done. Beyond that, there are significant barriers to dispersal and long-term survival.

      Thanks for the thoughtful post.

    3. Ralph Maughan Avatar

      Thinking of all the people who keep exotic pets, legally and mostly illegally in the case of wild cats, I would not be surprised if there are a number and a variety of medium to large feline carnivores in the woods of the Eastern and Southern United States.

  13. BryantO Avatar

    It is my understanding that all north american Cougars are descended of animals that recolonised the continent from central america after the late pleistocene extinction event. That is to say we had Cougars in north america during the pleistocene, but like most other large mammals,they went extinct here,but survived in central america,and have since re-colonised the continent. Therefore they represent a rather uniform genotype, and likely should be considered the same sub-species,were as some of the south american forms are quite distinct,and notably smaller. Anyone who lives in Cougar counrty knows how difficult it is to see one, yet it isn’t hard to find tracks and scat of them in winter,just go to your nearest rock outcroppings. Were I live,Utah,they are quite common based on how often I see their tracks,yet I have only seen on cougar in my life,a large male at less than 30 feet that I believe was stalking me(but that’s another story). It is possible Cougars do occur in the east,although the question of where they come from must be answered. Perhaps there is a population in eastern Canada that could be dispersing down the Appalachians?

    1. Phil Avatar

      BryantO: Excellent and informative post. Thanks.

  14. Alan Gregory Avatar

    Ironically, one of the most telling signs that there are no Eastern Cougars on the ground here in the Northeast is this: If there were, there would have been a roadkill by now. In Pennsylvania alone, one can no longer hike anywhere in the state and be more than a mile from the nearest road.

    1. ProWolf in WY Avatar
      ProWolf in WY

      I don’t know about Pennsylvania but I do know that places like Iowa have had roadkill.

      1. Phil Avatar

        Pro Wolf: I mentioned this before, but there was one killed in Atlanta, Chicago and I believe in West Virginia. There have also been sightings from video cameras in North and South Carolina. I don’t know if these migrated from Florida or from Wisconsin and Minnesota, but they are migrating to these places. I think this is great and would help sustain the high deer population in these areas.

  15. ProWolf in WY Avatar
    ProWolf in WY

    I’m wondering how distinct the subspecies of cougar were in the US. I can imagine the Florida panther being a distinctive subspecies, but am curious about the ones in places like New England versus Montana or Wyoming. I don’t imagine there is a huge difference. How far east does their range extend in Canada? It makes me wonder if they have dispersed into New England from there and if any would be the same subspecies. The main thing hampering their recovery in the east is states like Iowa that allow them to be shot with no license. I’m not saying Iowa is the best place for them to live, but the state could support a token population. There is no shortage of deer to eat.

    Save bears, I do agree about cougars stalking people. I had one follow me when I was hunting once. We left the truck and as we backtracked we saw some prints in the snow that were not there when we left. Pretty scary. It’s amazing to me how cougars don’t get near the reputation for being dangerous as grizzlies and wolves do.

    1. Phil Avatar

      Pro Wolf: Even the Florida panther is pretty similar to the Western cougar. If you look closely, the only major difference between a cougar and a Florida panther is the thickness of the fur. Offcourse this is relevant because the cougar also lives in cold climates and needs the thicker fur coat, while the Florida panther has a less thick and insulated coating, but paw sizes, overall size, width of nostril, ears, coloration of cubs, size of teeth, etc that biologists use are pretty similar to one another. I have never done DNA testings to distinguish between the two, but behaviors and traits are pretty similar. Is there a difference between the Texas cougar and Florida panther?

      I never see cougars as “stalking” people. If the cougar was truly stalking. Cougars, as to all predators, want assure that their territory, food, cubs, etc are protected, so they will follow “stalk to some people” to be assured that you are there to be no harm or danger to the cougar or whatever it needs to survive. If the cougar was truly stalking, then it would have attacked any time it wanted and there would be no stopping it from taking what it wants with its speed, strength and bite frequency. I understand cougars are stealth, but everyone who has stated that a “cougar was stalking them” is still alive to tell about it, right? If the cougar was hunting the humans, then they would have gone after them and not just “stalked”. Yes, there have been people who had been attacked by cougars, and this is prime examples that if cougars really wanted, then they would attack and would not be stopped.

      This is my personal opinion in experience with cougars, and I know I will get some who disagree with me, but saying that, why not contact experts who have worked with cougars for decades and see what they have to say?

      1. Phil Avatar

        Sorry, meant to say ” If the cougar was truly stalking, then nothing would stop it from getting what it wants.”

      2. BryantO Avatar

        Where I live,Cougars occur right on the edge of town,a city of a million people,Salt Lake City. You can go up in the foothills less than a mile out of town and find Cougar tracks in winter. I have even seen there tracks in peoples backyards on the edge of town and one was caught on surveillance video at a local university campus this winter. Yet people go jogging and biking,even at night,up our canyons, and as far as I know there has never been a Cougar attack on a person in the state. They have gone after pets and occasionally livestock(mainly sheep)but never a person that I know of. The reason they don’t have the reputation of Grizzlies,or even Black Bears,is because they so very rarely attack people. The one that I saw at 30 feet was in the bushes just checking me out,because I was down wind of him and he just wanted to make sure I was no threat. I did not feel in danger or that he had any intention to attack. After I saw him and we made direct eye contact for a few seconds,he jumped off in the opposite direction and disappeared into the brush without incident. So really, considering what a powerful predator they are,taking down full grown Elk and Moose 10X there own weight,it is amazing how compatible they are with us,except the deer hunters who every few years make a big fuss about how the Cougars are killing all their deer. Not that I am anti hunting,I just wish they would quite looking for scapegoats to blame.

  16. Jon Way Avatar

    there are no cougars in eastern Canada either, except for the similar sightings that occur in the NE US. They are mostly in western Canada like the US. See:

  17. Craig H. Avatar
    Craig H.

    As a Florida resident, I know that we have lost 8 or more Florida Panthers to autos so far this year in my county and the adjacent one in south Florida. We have panther crossing area signs posted to ask drivers to slow their speed so these animals can cross in safety. 25 years ago there was inbreeding in our panther stock which resulted in a crook at the end of the tail, a hole in the chambers of the heart, and male cats with testes problems. Western (Texas) cougars were brought in to breed with some captive females to stop the inbreeding. Some cats were collared and released. Some of the information learned was —-cats spend most of their time setting up and defending their territory; one male had a range of over 250 miles; cats were taught to use culverts under our major highways. What our cats really need is a corridor that runs North to south without road crossing (This is next to impossible in a populated state like mine.) As you might expect our panthers are much smaller in size than our western cougars with our males weighing around 120-140 pounds.

    1. Phil Avatar

      Craig: Did the plan to bring in the Texas cougars to mate with the female panthers in Florida being in the mid 90s? If so, how well has that worked up to this point? I know it worked pretty well at first, but is it still working well?

  18. ajax Avatar

    Thanks for the comments. Based on the history of land use in the East, I do not believe that any cougar populations have survived east of the Mississippi except Florida, but don’t find it impossible to believe that a few “feral” cougars (illegally released pets) could currently exist in a few eastern states.

    Again, subspecies are easier to justify when there is some isolating barrier between populations. For wide ranging animals like cougars (and wolves), there are few instances of true dispersal barriers on the North American mainland. Certain habitats and conditions are unique enough for the local population of wide ranging species to exhibit minor genetic endemism (or expression); it is interesting question as to whether such a condition is better described as “subspecies” or “ecotype”, and moreover, what the distinction is between the two.

    As a conservationist, I think “subspecies”, “ecotypes”, etc. should be preserved, except when it cannot be. In the case of the Florida panther, even if it was indeed a distinct subspecies ‘coryi’, the subspecies was doomed to genetic entropy with Florida panther populations remaining stagnant due in part to many geriatric females and high rates of sterility and genetic defects due to inbreeding. In this case, even if the Florida cougar was in any way distinct, I believe that biologists were completely correct in bringing in some new individuals from Texas; it is still the same species, and any possible difference between Florida and Texas cougars is far, far less than the difference between a Florida with cougars or a Florida without cougars.

  19. Craig H. Avatar
    Craig H.

    Phil, Unfortunately I’m not up to date with the question that you ask about the present genetic status . —-I’ll try to find out for you.

    Ajax, I agree that not having the Florida Panther would be one of our greatest losses. —I have yet to see one in the wild, but a number of years ago one circled my friend and I when we followed it’s prints in the Fahkahatchie Strand. I never did see it, but on the way out, we saw it’s paw print on top of my boot print.
    We currently are hearing of one praying on some goats in the Golden Gate Estates. So far the livestock owner has done everything possible to protect his goats (with high fences) and also protect the panther. I hope his attitude stays the same.


Dr. Ralph Maughan is professor emeritus of political science at Idaho State University. He was a Western Watersheds Project Board Member off and on for many years, and was also its President for several years. For a long time he produced Ralph Maughan’s Wolf Report. He was a founder of the Greater Yellowstone Coalition. He and Jackie Johnson Maughan wrote three editions of “Hiking Idaho.” He also wrote “Beyond the Tetons” and “Backpacking Wyoming’s Teton and Washakie Wilderness.” He created and is the administrator of The Wildlife News.

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