Lincoln Journal-Star: Nebraska mountain lions . . . wild, rare and beautiful

 A fine editorial as cougar increasingly reinhabit the Cornhusker state-

Wild, rare and beautiful. Editorial in the Lincoln (NB) Journal-Star





  1. CQ Avatar

    You’re right, Ralph, it IS a fine editorial.

    I second the suggestion (see “Discussion” tab next to the “Story” tab) by Dude R.P.: “Take down the fences, remove the center pivot irrigators and let most of Nebraska revert to its natural state. We could have one of the most beautiful National Parks (grasslands) in the system. Tourism could be a better economic driver than the dryland farming we subsidize in this state, if people only had vision.”

    If I could mention a couple things about the editorial that make me wince: the arrogant notion that the mountain lions who roam MUST be caught or killed, the absurd idea that a wild creature who is made to roam far and wide is actually “well” at a zoo, and the unthinking use of the words “that” and “which” (often used in conjunction with “it”) instead of “who” to describe sentient beings.

    I’m referring specifically to these two sentences:

    “The number includes a mountain lion THAT was captured in Omaha in 2003 near 114th St. and West Dodge, one of the business intersections in the city. The tawny animal, WHICH was wounded by a shotgun blast, can be seen today alive and WELL at the Henry Doorly Zoo.”

    It’s troubling that even people who are PRO-wild animals think it’s right for us to “manage” them and determine their fate, instead of calling for measures that would allow these beautiful creatures to live freely in environs of their choosing. As Dude R.P.’s comment (above) makes clear, we are helping ourselves, ethically and economically, as well as the animals, physically and emotionally, when we take the high road, putting on an equal footing all parties eager to live and be free.

  2. Jon Way Avatar

    I agree CQ. There is no evidence that a transient mt lion is a danger in these urban areas like the one they just shot. They are not consistent with protecting people b.c for every one that is seen (and eventually shot) probably many more go through undetected. There is no reason these animals can’t be sedated and moved to the first wooded area outside of the urban area. Then it can continue its nomadic journey to colonize new areas.


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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Ralph Maughan