Here are a few of the top stories on mountain lions from recent news articles. For more frequent updates, visit MountainLion.org and read the news daily.
7th Mountain Lion Killed in Western ND
After the recent killing of another cougar, North Dakota is now one dead lion away from maxing out this season's hunting limit. State biologists admit they have no idea how many lions are in the state. But likely, because the quota will be met well before the end of the season, the state Game & Fish Department will assume there is a large enough population and increase next year's limit. With the mentality that "if a hunter can shoot one, there must be plenty more," it's no surprise mountain lions have been completely killed off in most states.
South Dakota seems to be taking morbid pride in their zero tolerance for mountain lions. Every year, trophy hunting has increased despite opposition from the scientific community. Any mountain lion that wanders out of the Black Hills - where lions are hunted - is free game to be killed by residents. And any lion found near (the definition of "near" being completely subjective) people or housing, can also be killed without question in the name of public safety. On Friday a young male lion eating a deer in a rural area somehow still managed to meet the criteria of a threat, and was immediately killed. Outraged South Dakota residents are encouraged to contact the Black Hills Mountain Lion Foundation - tell them MLF sent you!
Over the years a handful of verified cougar sightings have been reported in Minnesota. On Saturday, a police camera captured video footage of a cougar in Champlin (about 20 miles North of Minneapolis). Although some residents are fearful, the community should keep in mind the odds of an attack are extremely rare. Some western states have thousands of cougars and have never had an attack on a person. It is highly unlikely that this one cougar in Minnesota will cause problems, but of course it is always wise for people to be cautious and protect their children and pets.
Panther or bobcat? North Naples resident report big cat sightings
While reports of a mountain lion earlier this week caused residents in South Dakota and Minnesota to irrationally panic, Florida residents aren't even batting an eyelash after news that a panther may be slinking through their neighborhood. They are fully aware that panthers may pass through from time to time and pose such a low risk to public safety that there is no reason to worry.