Mountain lions in NY

foxladyeJune 9, 2006

I am wondering why there are no tracks in the snow or cougar sightings in the winter. One would think that with all of the deer hunters in the woods that there would be lots of track sightings and of course with all of the DEC law enforcement in the woods during hunting season that they would be verifying the tracks. Do cougars fly South for the winter?

What about cougar killed deer? These are truly unique in the manner in which they are covered with debris and marked. Why aren't they found on a regular basis? The cougars have to eat, don't they?

Has anyone actually verified the photos taken of the cougars in Southern New York? I had done some preliminary research and found that all of the photos generated on internet curculation were in fact taken out West and had been in existence for years and the same exact photos had circulated in Michigan as well.

Where can I find concrete proof that these animals really exist in new York?


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adirondackgardener(Western Maine)

Don't ask the DEC. Official policy is that they don't exist in NY.


    Bookmark   June 9, 2006 at 10:29AM
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bhrost(zone 5 NY)

I don't have any opinion on the cougar matter, but as far as everything being found by hunters is concerned, there have been a couple cases of small planes crashed in the Catskills that weren't found till a few years later - planes are bigger than deer carcasses, shiny and metallic, and don't decay very quickly.

    Bookmark   June 11, 2006 at 7:09PM
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Concrete proof is going to be hard to find. Then, even if you do find proof, the DEC will say that the proof is from a cat that had been a pet and released in the area. I'm still kicking myself for not getting out of the car last year to check for tracks after a cougar crossed in front of me. I had my photography equipment in the back seat! I spoke to a neighbor about the cougar I saw and he wasn't a bit surprised. He told me of large depressions in the snow that he and his wife saw while snow shoeing on their property the previous winter. They went back to their house to get a tape measure and the depressions were 13 feet apart. Because the snow was deep and fell back into the void as the cat jumped out, they couldn't see tracks in the bottoms of the depressions, but he told me the only thing that could have made those "bounding" depressions would be a cougar. I'm a believer!

    Bookmark   June 13, 2006 at 9:59AM
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There was a story in the Plattsbugh Press Republican a few months back. I'm sure you could look it up. It was about sitings of Mountain Loins.

    Bookmark   June 13, 2006 at 9:49PM
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I haven't seen any proof of cougars where I live and I am pretty far out in the middle of nowhere. Still, there's something that my dogs don't like out behind our home... that includes the coyotes.

We used to hear the coyotes every night, especially in winter and the pups in spring. Nothing, it's like they all packed up the pack and packed off to somewhere elese. I don't know if a coyote would be intimidated by a cougar, but if I were a coyote I would be!

There have been reported sitings out here (cattaraugus and allegany counties) and I can't think of many things that would intimidate my 3 blue heeler cattle dogs except a pack of coyotes (which seem to have left the area) or perhaps a bear, as I know there are bears because I have seen them.

It's all a mystery to me but I like safe rather than sorry. We don't go after our cows alone anymore but in pairs and the kids aren't allowed to go any farther than 100 yards in any direction until someone proves it is a hoax, I prefer none of us find ourselves looking at a cat that is near (if not equal) to our body weight.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2006 at 9:37AM
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otsego(z4 upstate NY)

This strand has come up a few times before in this forum, notably in a long exchange between October of last year and May of this year. There were several people on that strand who claimed to have seen them then in different parts of upstate NY. I know that here in Otsego County we have had several sitings, including one that was photographed and the image presented to two groups of experts, one was the Regional DEC office, which called the image that of a housecat or perhaps an escaped Mountain Lion. The other groups was from SUNY Oneonta's Biological Field Station which identified the image that of a Mountain Lion.
The story, with accompanying photo is at the attached link. I suggest that you read the story and then look at the photo in an image browser that allows you to magnify the photograph and judge for yourself.

Cooperstown, NY

Here is a link that might be useful: Mountain Lion Photograph

    Bookmark   June 17, 2006 at 8:53PM
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Photographs without landmarks are unverifiable. Anonymous photographers are also not believable. Photos of cougars or mountain lions can be taken anywhere and in fact photos taken out west have been documented as being used in Southern New York cougar reports - such as the one in Stueben County of the cougar on the porch. That photo has been circulated for many years and was also circulated in Michigan where they are also trying to prove the presence of mountain lions. The photo of the cougar on that porch was taken out West, Colorado I believe. There are several people who have pet cougars, a few of them are friends of mine. They have in the past allowed photos to be taken of their cats in very natural surroundings - one such being a cougar bounding down a hill in the snow (he was chasing a ball). This photo was then used in a "DEC has released cougars!" rumour mill.
In Ohio, a person can go to an auction and buy anything they want - bears, cougars, zebras, monkeys- you name it.. they can bring it back into their own state, such as New York, but that doesn't make it legal in New York. When an exotic pet such as this escapes or is released because it outgrew the home, this may create a loose cougar. This has happened in the past. Keep in mind that these exotic pets are usually decalwed and defanged and neutered. These might be strolling through a back yard. However, a naturally occuring cougar would not be strolling through a back yard. They are too elusive.
The DEC has not released cougars. Where would they get all these cougars? They aren't free and the DEC doesn't have the money. What would be their motive? How could they get federal permission and yet still keep it a secret? Who would be responsible if a child was killed?
As far as releasing cougars to control deer- why not just issue more deer permits? Aren't hunters already complaining there aren't enough deer? Do cougars control coyotes (which the DEC is also incorrectly blamed for "stocking").. No. Out west coyotes tree cougars all the time. Cougars don't kill or control coyotes. Coyotes are controlled by availability of food, and so are deer.
The cougar rumours are fun to perpetuate, fun stories to tell, believable when details are interspersed and were likely created to see how far they would travel in the rumour mill, much like the Bigfoot sightings... See link on Bigfoot in Clarence New York this year :0)

Here is a link that might be useful: Foxwood Wildlife Rescue, Inc

    Bookmark   June 30, 2006 at 7:25AM
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otsego(z4 upstate NY)

I'm not sure how a discussion of Mountain Lions morphed into a rant on "Big Foot" frauds, but I do know that the photograph that I linked to was examined by both state and SUNY staff with a great deal of wildlife identification expertise and neither thought that the picture was either faked or from another place. Living in a small town I know that the photographer is well-regarded by his neighbors and would have little incentive to palm off a doctored photograph.

    Bookmark   June 30, 2006 at 6:10PM
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jayco(5b NY)

Why wouldn't there be cougars, when the deer population is completely out of control?

    Bookmark   July 1, 2006 at 1:18PM
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adirondackgardener(Western Maine)

>Why wouldn't there be cougars, when the deer population is completely out of control?

Couldn't one ask, why is the deer population out of control if there are cougers?


    Bookmark   July 1, 2006 at 6:55PM
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According to the deer hunters who didn't get their deer this year there aren't enough deer. According to Gardeners and farmers, there are too many deer. So which is it? One very valid theory is that the browse line is too high from deer populations being manipulated to provide enough deer to make hunters happy. Because the browse line is too high, there is not enough food for the deer to stay in the wooded, more remote "hunting" areas, so they are forced to come out of the woods and into the suburbs to eat garden flowers and vegetables and also into the farmers fields. Now, a new argument exists that the farmers are getting too many nuisance permits and are killing all the deer when they wander into their farm fields and tree farms to munch on crops. The deer issue could be a whole new list topic because there is so much controversy.
So how do cougars enter into all of this? They enter into it as the hunters, angry because they are not able to fill their permits during the season start to blame the DEC. They start rumours and have animated discussion about how crooked and ill-run the DEC is. This is where the cougar rumours originated. How many people have heard the infamous story of how the farmer shot the cougar with the DEC tag in its ear? It was supposedly killing his cows. The story then says the DEC told him to keep the secret of how they released all these pairs of cougars in the area (all supposedly ear tagged). This rumour crops up every summer and in many different counties from Niagara to Stueben counties and every county East and in between. It is a fun story to tell, and people really believe it, especially when it is peppered with credible details. I know one nice, but gullible guy who keeps a rifle next to his door now "for the cougar". Then, whomever the storyteller is, he says it was substantiated by a "DEC Rep" whose name is never revealed. In fact, if one tries to actually substantiate the people or places involved, the story quickly unravels.
While I don't doubt the occasional escaped exotic pet may exist, to think that there is a natural, viable population or that the DEC has released them is far-fetched.
There is a large Bobcat population, as well as Fishers in this area of New York. Being in the wildife control and rehabilitation "business", I am all too familiar with animal misidentification by individuals. I have gone to pick up "Baby Bald Eagles" that turned out to be Mourning Doves. I have retrieved "Baby Foxes" from porches that turned out to be Adult Raccoons. I have examined "cougar droppings " in trees that turned out to be raccoon droppings in saplings. I have investigated "Bobcat" calls that turned out to be house cats, I have investigated "Dead Wolves" on roadsides that were small coyotes, or sometimes domestic dogs. I have investigated birds in chimneys that turned out to be baby raccoons. I have gone on more than a few "coyote" calls that turned out to be Red fox pups. Wildlife misidentification abounds. Coyotes are at the top of the food chain now. Of course, the accusations that the DEC "stocked" New York with Coyotes also abound. Again, that would be a topic for another list... :0)

    Bookmark   July 2, 2006 at 9:31AM
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Three of us saw a cougar in Colden last summer. He was in the hay field after we raked hay. He appeared a few days in a row around 6 PM at night. I was mentioning this to our vet that came out to the farm and she said that she saw a cougar on her back deck; I believe she said that she lives in Concord. We got the same story from the DEC; about no cougars being released here.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2006 at 12:38AM
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There is a regular sighting of a mountain lion (NOT A BOBCAT)in the Yellow City Road area of Amenia (Dutchess County). It is believed to have its "nest" close to one of the local residents in a heavily wooded area.

    Bookmark   December 18, 2006 at 2:02PM
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I live in NY State Saratoga County I have been hunting in the Adirondack Mountains for over 35 years Yes! Mountain Lions do live, hunt & breed in the Adirondacks! I have seen only one, but if there is one, there must be more!
Three years ago (November, 2003) I was hunting alone as I do most of the time North of Saranac Lake (I hunt deep in the forest I spend 3-5 days camping and hunting taking small game for my dinner, but always looking for that trophy buck to take home I hunt with a pistol A S&W model 629 44 mag with an 8 ½ inch barrel I have a nice scope for it but never found the need to use it I have had many an opportunity to kill a bear and other critters but never cared to do so as I just wanted to find that trophy buck Now and then I would drop a coyote or 2 because they will just run down deer and killÂem for the hell of it Normally my hunting trip would end with the taking of a 6 to 10 pointer no trophy as to dateÂ) Anyway, I was sitting on the west side of a small ravine with a light wind to my face about 20 feet below me was a deer run at the bottom of the ravine that I had my eye on I saw a small, spike horn buck walking the run with 2 small doe in front of him I was very still to keep them from hearing, seeing or smelling me I was waiting to see if a larger buck would be behind them The other side of the ravine was mostly rock with rock ledges and some trees Something caught my eye on that rocky side of the ravine It was a Mountain Lion! He (or she) was stalking the deer below The lion never noticed me but I had a perfect shot at it if I chose to take it I just watched as they all moved out of sight I sat for what seemed an hour more then went back to my camp The next day, I shot a 6 pointer, packed up and left I stopped at the Stewarts shop in Saranac Lake for a coffee & some gas for my Jeep and an En-Con officer walked over to look at my kill and asked to see my hunting license & pistol permit I proceeded to tell him of the Mountain Lion and with a stupid grin, he asked me if Big-Foot was with the cat I asked him if heÂs a hunter he said he has better things to do then sit all day in the woods I said, Well looks like IÂm just wasting my breath on you bud cuz you ainÂt gonna believe me anyway.
About a year latter, sitting in a doctors waiting room, I was flipping through some magazines and on the cover of Adirondack Magazine was a photo of a mountain lion with a statement something like Mountain lions in the AdirondacksÂ
I rest my caseÂ

    Bookmark   December 20, 2006 at 5:32PM
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A very nice short story written by oneshot, but alas, not convincing. Do these mountain lions fly South for the winte, because the sightings mysterously stop when there is snow on the ground, and then start up again in spring and summer. One would think that there would be lots of tracks out there to see during the hunting season when there is snow on the ground, but alas, there are none? Perhaps Mountain lions hibernate if they don't fly south? Don't mountain lions have to prowl about looking for prey like other predators- if so, how do they do this without leaving tracks in the snow for deer hunters who are out in the woods to see.

    Bookmark   January 1, 2007 at 7:57PM
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PS - Even bigfoot leaves tracks! LOL! :0)

    Bookmark   January 1, 2007 at 8:02PM
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Why are you so dead-set on a hunter finding footprints of a mountain lion as the only proof of their existence in the Adirondacks? I just don't get people like you... I guess you have to see things for yourself to believe it exists. Have you any idea the vast territory the Adirondacks covers? Are you aware that this part of NY State (Just the Adirondack State Park alone) is larger then the more famous Yellowstone, Grand Canyon and Yosemite National Parks combined? You, just like the En-Con officer I talked to, most likely have never ventured very far into this beautiful area If anyone at all would be chosen to be the eyes in a deep forest such as The Adirondack Mountains, it would be the quiet, watchful eye of the hunter and I dont mean the guy that goes to the road-side farm to drop a deer on opening day! I have been hunting this area for over 35 years I was a sniper in Vietnam Im always sure of what Im shooting at and I always drop what I shoot at I know what my eyes viewed that day and I know it was a Mountain Lion If you need to see footprints in the snow as the only proof then I suggest you pack your back-pack with some goodies, grab your sleeping bag and take a nice long hike in the snow until you find the prints you desire Or try believing someone when they say they have seen something such as an Adirondack Mountain Lion


    Bookmark   January 16, 2007 at 7:00PM
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Finding verifiable evidence is not such an impossible task, and with all of the "sightings", it shouldn't be difficult to get a verifiable photo with landmarks, etc. Practically everyone carries cell phones with cameras or some recording device these days, yet still no verified photos, except for the internet ones that were actually taken out West. I too have spent plenty of time in the woods, and no doubt as much as you, and yes, I have ventured quite deep into Adirondack territory, and have no desire to pack up my sleeping bag this winter to go and look for something that just plain would be impossible to find, it is called common sense. With all of the hunters in the woods throughout New York State, isn't it highly unusual that all of the cougars sighted in the summer have somehow disappeared and failed to leave evidence of their existence? Surely if you are out in the Adirondack woods you will not find a single, but many tracks, being the woodsman you are.
Mangy coyotes are what is being seen in the surrounding counties. In the summer, deer are also mistaken for cougars. I am not saying that people are lying about seeing what they think are cougars, I am saying that a fleeting glance makes them believe that what they just saw was a cougar, mainly because they have never seen what a coyote with sarcoptic mange looks like. The En Con Officers are not a bunch of buffoons as "cougar watchers" seem to think. I have gone on numerous calls as well, to check out "cougar sightings" only to find raccoon scat, mangy coyotes, coyote tracks and deer tracks in the dirt, or bobcat tracks and even house cats! All of these from experienced wildlife folks, vet techs, hunters, trappers, etc. I would love to be able to verify a sighting, but years of trying has led me to the conclusion that people simply misidentify wildlife. As far as you seeing a mountain lion in the Adirondacks, I would guess that perhaps you did, there are numerous exotic pets that have been released in the Adirondack region, wolf hybrids and probably cougars that were released when they reached adulthood and could no longer be hidden by their owners. Adirondacks and Steuben, Erie, Cattaraugus, allegany and such areas are quite different. Yes, the Adirondack region is vast and though that possibility does exist, to think that people are seeing cougars stroll through their back yards, hop across roads and leap through fields is simply ridiculous.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2007 at 7:29AM
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I know everyone has their own opinion as to whether or not there are mountain lions in New York and there seems to be enough to support either way. There seems to be little to no Definitive proof that there are Mountain Lions yet there's also just enough proof (photos,stories etc.) and the fact that Mountain Lions are Very Very elusive and Upstate NY has areas that are so vast and remote that there very well could be some resident Mountain Lions. Why couldn't they have slipped through time surviving in the shadows just out of sight or just out of focus in our camera lenses. I've been hunting deer in Upstate NY all my life and I have never come across one or even saw tracks but I know that doesn't mean that they could still be there. As far as the DEC releasing them into the wild as some kind of deer population control I think thats crazy. The amount of deer that an average Mountain lion can consume would not make a big enough dent in the deer herd to make a difference. No, thats why they instead released coyotes. Unfortunately the coyotes are much more effective. I have hunted in Greene County in the Beech Ridge area (West Kill) for about 20 years and 2 generations of my family before me hunted the same area and what I know is coyotes have turned what was a prime deer hunting area into a wasteland. If I saw 1 coyote all season when I was younger I was lucky, now I listen to them howling and yelping all night long lying in bed. I've found countless kills Deer and Turkey and I am lucky to see a deer during the day now.

    Bookmark   March 10, 2007 at 11:28AM
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The husband of one of my coworkers was hunting with his buddies in Nov 05 in Broome Co., NY. They shot and wounded a deer. They tracked it but lost the blood trail at sunset. The following morning they picked up the trail and followed it to the carcass, which they found partly eaten and IN A TREE. There were very large cat prints on the ground under the tree. Is there any predator in North America besides the mountain lion that can pull an adult deer carcass up into a tree??

    Bookmark   March 16, 2007 at 7:53PM
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nny_gardener(Zone 4/5)

I saw one a couple of years ago, on the way home to Gouverneur. I live in St. Lawrence County along the river. It was an extremely large cat. You can't get them confused

    Bookmark   April 9, 2007 at 6:28PM
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This Picture was taken last year in Portlandville, New York
just outside of Cooperstown, I had my camera affixed to a tree
to see what was coming on my property
You tell me what you think it is

    Bookmark   April 12, 2007 at 9:30PM
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penny1947(z6 WNY)

Looks like a cougar to me.


    Bookmark   April 13, 2007 at 6:08AM
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I've enjoyed reading all of the postings. I don't usually voice my opinion in these venues, but I feel compelled to do so because I too saw a mountain lion in Broome County in March of 2006. I am a school bus driver and see lots of wildlife on my rural route. This particular day it was snowing and I was driving down a narrow road that is heavily wooded on both sides. I saw a tan animal step out onto the road approximately 30-50 yards in front of my bus. At first glance I assumed it was a deer because of the coloration. I slowed the bus and realized that the animal was far too short for a deer and had no noticeable snout. As it fully entered the road a long tail was visible and I realized I was staring at a mountain lion. The animal crossed the road, leapt onto the opposite bank and disappeared into the woods. I was still unsure of what I had just seen until the student sitting directly behind me uttered, "What was that?". I stopped the bus briefly where we saw it reenter the woods, but it was impossible to see where it went through the trees.
Since that time several people have told me of seeing mountain lions and hearing what they believe are mountain lions in the surrounding woods. I do not believe the DEC would consort with insurance companies or be irresponsible enough to release such deadly predators anywhere near human populated areas. I do believe, however, that the possibility of mountain lions extending their territory into our area is quite plausible. There is definitely a healthy population of white tail deer and a growing population of coyotes, which are becoming quite a nuisance, that would seemingly be attractive to large cats.
As far as concrete physical evidence we must remember what elusive creatures cats are. Anyone who has ever owned a house cat must know how quickly they can disappear into tall grass or a thicket of bushes. Also, the Florida Panther is a classic example of how difficult it is to track cats in the wild, even when we're trying to help them.
To tommy2117, I viewed your photo and I'm sorry to tell you that it is no doubt a bobcat you snapped a picture of. The short tail and spotted fur conclude that for me. To foxladye, I appreciate your right to your opinion, but the abrasive nature in which you voice it only makes me deduce that you simply like to "hear yourself type". Sorry.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2007 at 9:15AM
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My siting in March 2006 should confirm they don't fly south for the winter.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2007 at 9:27AM
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I've lived in Broome County and have property there. We've seen them too.
There's plenty of places for them to hide.
Do you remember the Moose that came down from Canada several years ago? He made it into Tioga County without being seen. Now if a big creature like the moose can make it thru the state without being spotted so can a cat. And what about all the bear we have now. You think if they can find a way to adapt that a cat couldn't?
There's plenty of places all thru NYS for animals like the mountain lion to hide.
Mother nature is pretty wise. She doesn't allow one part of her food chain to move into an area without the rest of the
food chain coming along too.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2007 at 1:47PM
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penny1947(z6 WNY)

I believe you are right on the picture. I looked at it very early this a.m. very quickly. I went back for another look this afternoon and the tail does indeed apear to be bobbed which would indicate a bob cat. I still wasn't able to see the picture clear enough to determine the coloration and markings of the fur.


    Bookmark   April 13, 2007 at 6:37PM
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I am a Wildlife Biologist and have investigated numerous cougar sightings in New York in the last 15 years. I am disappointed as I have seen only cases of misidentification so far. Some of these include, but are not limited to: Bobcat, housecat, raccoon, fisher, domestic dog (!), coyote, bear, and deer. A few years back a cougar that a couple in New York had purchsed through an auction escaped their grossly inadequate facilities. The young cat was certainly not elusive as would be a wild animal and was easily seen, captured and confiscated. The couple was ticketed. It would be phenomenal to be able investigate a viable lead, but of yet, no authentic tracks, legitimate photos or verifiable evidence has been presented. I would love to be able to investigate a situation involving a real wild cougar that could be legitimately authenticated, but of yet have experienced nothing but disappointment. Foxlady is right on the money, providing excellent information and food for thought and is correct in stating the sightings are only taking place when the snow is gone and tracks can not be authenticated. Spring is here and already the sightings by the general public are starting up again. Numerous e-mails are forwarded alleging authentic photos, but so far, only old photos that have circulated the internet for years are accompanying the stories. No one more than I would like to authenticate a genuine wild cougar(felis concolor) sighting with good hard evidence. After a while, it gets expensive, time consuming and disappointing to investigate these sightings and be presented with hard evidence of other species as listed above. By the way Tommy2117 Nice picture! That is a bobcat(Lynx rufus). Bobcats are common in New York now and they can and will take down a deer. Cut and paste this link to see some interesting photos

    Bookmark   April 23, 2007 at 12:05PM
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Some very interesting post here!
Let me introduce myself....

stop by my web site...

    Bookmark   April 23, 2007 at 11:55PM
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no edit button??
here is the correct address:

    Bookmark   April 24, 2007 at 12:01AM
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Interesting site cougardaville. One woman did show me some quite large tracks in the snow last year and they were identified as Bobcat tracks. Bobcats have almost snowshoe like feet that leave very large tracks.
The auctions in Mount Hope, OH provide a local source for sale of these cats very close to NY and PA. It seems a lot of alleged sightings involve animals crossing roads, yet none are ever hit by cars. There are rumours of finding dead cougars on the side of the road, but the drivers never pick them up and the story is always an old one so that no evidence would remain. The story of a cougar in the Jamestown, NY area is at a fever pitch now due to a e-mail hoax with photos circulating. There were several genuine sightings along Lake Erie about 12 years ago. There were two cats, a black one and a tan one. These were quickly identified as cats that a woman in Canada had lost and had actually crossed the ice on Lake Erie into the shoreline area of Western New York. The cats were never captured and could still be alive and well, as their carcasses were never found either. Last they were seen was in the Boston Hills of New York. According to their owner they were neutered. Anyone having sightings or getting photos is invited to send them to me for evaluation

    Bookmark   May 3, 2007 at 7:26AM
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I live in Elmira.........right on the PA state line..just
above Potter and Tioga counties in PA. where there have
been numerous "sightings " of mountain lions over the last
10 years.
Hubby and I believe for sure we saw one on Dec. 25, 2005
while driving on US RT. 6 near Gaines, Pa at about 7 PM.
He was crossing the road in front of us and we had to stop
so he could go across. Saw him clearly in our headlights
and we both agreed it was MUCH LARGER than a bobcat...and
for certain seemed to be a mountain lion. the Elmira Star Gazette online.......there
is an article saying that four people spotted a
cougar in WELLSBORO, PA... (Tioga county )
two mornings ago.

I wish they had taken a photo.

    Bookmark   May 21, 2007 at 7:48PM
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Yes, many sighting reports in WELLSBORO, PA. What concerns me the most is many the sightings are in some of Pa's recreational parks! One man took 14 digital pictures of a ML, and wanted $$$ to share them! I don't care about owning someone's pictures only the safety of the location where kids are playing!!

Thanks fro checking out the site johnmer, hope you made it to the Forums pages

    Bookmark   May 30, 2007 at 12:57AM
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I live in Schoharie county and me & my husband had one run right in front of our car(long tail, not a bobcat).We ask the dog warden the next day and he said they(dec) released them but don't want to admight it.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2007 at 7:35PM
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I live in Ithaca and I saw (across the creek from my yard and my next door neighbors - natural city land) something that looked suspiciously like a very large tannish colored cat. It was definitely not a dog, definitely not a tom cat and definitely not a deer.

It may not have been a big cat, but it was not one of the usual animals we'd see around here. It was about the right size for a bobcat, anyway.

I didn't know that a) they could be in this area, and b) that there was debate about them at all.

I've been keeping my eye out since, but haven't seen anything.

Even though this is a rather natural area, it's also quite populated near by, so it doesn't make a lot of sense that it would be here, but I don't know anything about bobcats.

    Bookmark   July 10, 2007 at 12:21AM
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This is an old thread, so forgive me for adding to it, but I have to give oneshot a little support.

We live in Saranac Lake. Last year my husband was hiking Moose Pond trail, alone. He heard huge yowl (could've been a bobcat, sure). He told me at the time that he was so unnerved, he picked up a big stick and a stone before he continued around the corner. Silly weapons, but it's his reaction that tells me it was something scary. DH is a big guy, very confident, and spends lots of time in the woods. He went around a few bends in the trail and found half a deer carcase hauled up upon a tall stump (five, six feet high). A big animal was crashing through the woods away from him. He turned around.

I went back with him the next day, and saw the carcase. We tried to look for tracks, but the groundcover is all fern, and we're not good enough to make any judgements from disturbed foliage.

This isn't at all verified evidence, but I'm a believer. My DH wasn't a sniper, but is an engineer, and is really good at measuring and estimating size, height, etc. and we spent a lot of time researching bobcat kills. The funny part of the story is that DH recorded the experience in the trail log, and while some of the hunters (it was hunting season) said, "Yup, looks like a big animal did that" most of the seasonal hikers didn't even read the log, and kept writing comments like "Saw a dead thing in a tree. What is it?" and, after the carcase had decayed, "Something killed a rabbit and left it on a stump."

P.S. When I go to other states, I'm a seasonal hiker, too, so no nastiness meant....

    Bookmark   July 29, 2007 at 7:11AM
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Hi, I have just been reading all the entries and would like to get some input on something.
I have 2 horses boarded at a stable in the Town of Western which is in Oneida County in New York State just south of the Adirondack State Park. This morning at 9:30, the horses were turned out as usual and brought back in at 4:00 pm for feeding. My 17 year old 15-3 hand Thoroughbred mare that is in foal was attacked by something. It was large enough to take her down as she was full of mud. She has over 25 wounds on her body that range from small puncture wounds to large scrapes of skin and fur missing. She has severe swelling across one side of her body and puncture wounds on one lower hind leg. She also had what looked to be claw marks in the mud down her back several times. The veterinarian says that it look like something was actually on her back attacking her. The other horse with her in that paddock had a few scratches and fur missing but nothing compared to what my mare looked like. My 1 1/2 year old 15-2 hand Dutch Warmblood filly had half of the skin on one of her lower hind legs literally ripped off. It almost looks like she was kicking at something and it grabbed her and tore the skin off. She was in an adjoining paddock. None of the other horses that were out seemed to be touched.
I spoke to the local Environmental Conservation officer who will be out to the farm tomorrow morning to check the area. We did a quick check of the fencing to see if that was what tore my filly's leg to no avail. There does appear to be areas where it looks like a struggle took place with some fur and blood in the middle of the paddocks. The fencing is 5 feet tall, high tensile wire - I think about 5 or 6 strands with every other strand electrified. The encon officer advised it may have been coy dogs which are in the area but they are nocturnal and I can't imagine them being able to take down such a large horse. He also mentioned domestic dogs which I highly doubt. He brought up that a bear could be at fault but I have a hard time thinking that a bear would be able to get underneath the wire fencing. Plus, I do not believe that bears would go after horses - don't they mostly eat berries and vegetation? It's not like it's winter out and there aren't other food supplies available.
There have been "sightings" in the area a few towns away of a cougar killing local residents' dogs and cats but the encon officer said that when he investigated, the tracks appeared to be bear tracks. I don't know how an observer could mistake a bear for a cougar but that's what was told to me by encon. He advised me all the sightings were false in NY State.
Does anybody know if this sounds like it could have been a cougar attack? I'm just curious as I have a HUGE vet bill right now and would like to know what caused it and how I can prevent this from happening again. A neighboring hunter came to see my mare and believes it was something in the cat family. Could and would a bobcat take down a large horse?
Any information you can provide me would be greatly appreciated.

    Bookmark   October 30, 2007 at 11:56PM
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hammerl(z5-6 Amherst NY)

Your message made me think about a local case near Fredonia, NY (Chautauqua county), reported September 29, 2007. I can't find the text online other than cached ( Here's what wire services reported, from archived databases.

"Troopers say wild animal attacked horse in Pomfret

"FREDONIA -- An Arabian horse was attacked by a large wild animal Thursday night, according to state police.

"Troopers called to a Harmon Hill Road address in Pomfret at about 11 p.m. found that the horse had been attacked and suffered claw and bite marks over its entire body.

"Veterinarians treated the horse, which suffered no life-threatening injuries.

"If residents see or know of other similar incidents, call the State Police at Fredonia, 675-1521."
I recall hearing on the news that the horse jumped two fences in terror that night and had claw marks all over it (including its back) and chunks of flesh bitten off, although it was expected to survive.

The DEC investigated and claimed another horse attacked the horse in question.

Below is a link to an attack in London, Ontario from this past week that is believed to be cougar, and it sounds eerily familiar.

    Bookmark   October 31, 2007 at 11:02AM
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The London link did not work. The correct link is below.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2007 at 8:05PM
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Sorry about what happened to your horse. As a horseman myself, I hear plenty of stories of mysterious injuries to horses! It seems you can turn a horse out in the safest pasture imaginable, and it will still find a way to get injured. One can't imagine what would go through the electrical strands to get to a horse. Generally speaking, electric wire will keep most dogs, coyotes, cats and people out. The rumour about a famer shooting a cat with DEC tags on is just that , a rumour. It is a common story that is perpetuated and there is not a lick of truth to it, but it is a fun story to tell. I know guys who tell it just to watch the reactions on peoples faces, and they are plenty gullible and that is kind of fun to see too. DEC didn't release cougars, they can't because of costs, and federal involvement . You are near the Adirondacks - look what they have been going through with the groups that want to introduce wolves! Why would they introduce cougars when wolves would do what people think cougars were released for and do it so much more efficiently? Wolves kill coyotes, wolves kill deer. Why not just approve the wolf project?
Anyhow, As far as coyotes, they really don't work that way. Domestic dogs, do. If a horse falls you can bet they will be on it in a second. Your horse, covered in mud did obviously fall too. The incidence of Coydogs (coyote/ dog mixes) is extremely rare. They are either pure coyote, or pure dog. Coyotes attack for food, and they generally don't go after food that is going to take more energy to pull down than they will get from it. Dogs are different. Dogs chase and go after animals for fun and the thrill of the chase. You may never find out what happened to your horse. Perhaps a trail cam will help?

    Bookmark   November 4, 2007 at 6:29AM
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I was hiking in the winter near Cold Brook NY 4 years ago with my son when a storm blew in. I saw a mountain lion about 50 yards from us and he was moving away from us. I then walked over to where I saw the mountain lion and YES there were tracks. They were filling in fast with the snow but they were there and yes it was a mountain lion that I saw. My sister saw a Mountain Lion in Camilus this past Saturday Nov 3, 2007. I will ask her to post here sighting here. A animal control expert is setting up BIG traps after he saw the evidence... tracks etc. And the animal control guy told her---"You are not the first call I've had about this one."... Also, the police were called and after looking at the evidence, they agreed it was a big cat....

I guess I am a bit baffled when I read that there is NO evidence.... there is.

    Bookmark   November 5, 2007 at 5:47PM
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I had a "big" cat sighting this weekend just 7 miles west of Syracuse, NY. I have an alpaca farm in Camillus and was doing my usual afternoon chores (about 2pm)... out of the corner of my eye I saw something crouching bewteen my stables and barn. I turn and look straight at this "cat" which is standing behind the fencing between the buildings. It stays there a good 15-20 seconds, during which I am saying to myself, "You've got to be kidding me!" It goes to the right of the buildings, heading for my pasture with my girls and young crias (alpaca babies)... The alpacas come running up the hill and go right into the stables, giving their "danger" warning calls. This animal was not a dog, coyote, neighbor's cat etc... this was a predator cat - be it a LARGE bobcat or a cougar or something. It has me rattled - even as a mountain climber, and 46er, I am not comfortable with this animal being near my farm. This is proof to me that there are BIG cats in Upstate NY!

    Bookmark   November 5, 2007 at 5:48PM
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Sorry Zoar, just seeing what one believes is a big cat simply is not "evidence". Evidence is a scientific, verified record. Tracks with landmarks that are viewed, photographed, verified by real experts (not just a "wildlife control expert"). A clear photograph with a local landmark nearby that can be verified by real experts is evidence. Cougars aren't ghosts, they are very large animals and they definitely leave tracks - The snow is coming. With all of the "cougar sightings" there must be tracks in the snow for the professionals to verify, yet none ever show up. Strange, but true. Can anyone explain how there can be so many cougar sightings, yet no verified tracks or cougar kills? Many years ago there was ONE documented cougar kill in the Adirondacks. The DEC were thrilled to document it and they did so properly. since then though, there is no scientific , documentable evidence.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2007 at 2:47PM
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Johnmer, can you go to, forums, then "close calls" and my story is the top one from Oneida County. I just can't imagine a dog leaving wounds like this on my horses. We've had coyotes in the area for over 20 years since I've been associated with the barn and there have never been any attacks. We can hear them howling in the distance and it's spooky but never even saw one. I believe even a domestic dog would bark and create a raucous when attacking an animal. The neighbor is only about 100 yards from the pasture and witnessed the horses running but didn't hear anything. He just thought they were kicking up their hooves bcuz it was a nice day. My vet even said the marks were not made from a dog or coyote - they were not bite marks but claw marks. He believes it was some type of cat - whether a bobcat could do this? I'm clueless. But you better believe I've been on my guard, checking the outdoor arena for any footprints and when I get a nice day I'll be back by the power lines and woods to check for more prints. Rumor has it that another horse was attacked a few days ago about 3 miles from where my horses are stabled. I'll definately be going there to check into it. It's scary thinking I used to trail ride back there and enjoy the tranquility of the area - now I'm paranoid in the indoor arena as it is a cover-all (tent structure) and I'm thinking that whenever the winds blows and the tent moves, something is going to rip through it and attack me. I just wish I could definately put a finger on what did this so me and the rest of the people at my stable can rest and relax. It's no longer my "SAFE HAVEN" from life like it used to be : (

    Bookmark   November 6, 2007 at 6:05PM
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Try calling the DEC. If it is NOT during hours then you are out of luck... My two (2) sightings of mountain lions in Upstate NY or NY/Ma border were not during "hours".

I did have big cat prints on my land last fall yet did NOT call the DEC in there, as well... I could have but didn't. Because I saw it as "why call these state guys on my land to look at some prints after my brother said he did that and they came and looked and said yea it is a big cat print but it can't be a mountain lion because there are NO mountian lions in NY state.

However, the more I read and learn about Mountain Lions in NY State, the more I am determined to take the documentation to PROVE it to the nonbelievers... Every article I read (and there are quite a few now) on mountain lions in NY or PA they all basically leave you with the same impression: There are NO mountian lions here; it is a MYTH... Every article sights the same NON-Believer sources and uses the same discrediting approach which is---yes some people "say" they "see" them but some people have claimed to see Yetti too, (hahahaha) and in NEITHER case is there absolute PROOF...

UGH. This "technique" is proven effective to quiet MOST people from reporting any sightings and it certainly makes most people join the chorus of sheep that assert: No mountian lions in NY State or PA... It reminds me of every article on relying 100% on your own power from solar in NY State... every article essentially says---'Simply not enough sun; AND too many maintennce issues'.... well I have been totally off the grid for over two years, now and I am very satisfied and yes I even have hot and cold running water(!) and I am LIVING proof that the negative story being told by ALL the written sources is a lie. I don't need an expert to tell me it can't be done economically. I'm just so glad I didn't listen to all the experts or believe all the "articles". I'd be buying power from NYSEG as we speak and be another sheep in the herd that not only believes what he reads, but also sights the many sources as EVIDENCE that 100% solar power is not practical in Upstate NY... similarly I do NOT believe all the many articles written about the MYTH of Mountian Lions in NY. I saw TWO Mountain lions. One was nearly on either end of the state from the opther and the encounters were years apart. But they were NOT Tom Cats or Bob Cats. These had lion tails, and they were over 100 pounds... And there body shape was a Mountain Lion... And despite the fact I did not catch it on video or camera, yes that is EVIDENCE enough for me: my own eyes.

Moreover, I spoke with my sister right after her encounter with a mountain lion at her alpaca farm near syracuse this past weekend (Nov 3 2007) (see above), she said the cat was the size of one of her Mastifs.... a 140 pound animal... It's head was above the middle rail of her farm fence, and it had a lion tail which she saw clearly all from about 30 feet away... sorry no BOB cat is 140 pounds... and the mountain lion tail is so distinctive... I believe her. That is evidence.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2007 at 2:22PM
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...just a follow up to my mountain lion encounter this weekend... I went back and measured the fence rail which was at the height of the cat's head - it is 30 inches from the ground so the cat was 30 inches tall to his head. There are absolutely paw prints and a clear path that it took along the pasture fencing and then down into the wooded ravine. No, I do not have a photograph as evidence...and when the DEC IS called, their response time is so slow that any "evidence" gets destroyed by weather... why is that?... I have been waiting since Saturday for some official agent to respond... and here it is Thursday already..... I have been in this area for nine years... encountering coy dogs, coyotes, fox, deer, racoons, skunks, etc... I know what I saw. It was clear as comments previously of stating that it was a BIG cat of some kind... and not emphatically stating that I believed it to be a mountain lion, hands down, was only to make sure my sighting - as "some type" of CAT was taken as a serious warning to other farmers and hikers out there.... I don't want anyone else to lose an animal like I have....

    Bookmark   November 8, 2007 at 10:18AM
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Dogs do NOT make noise when they are going after something. They are very quiet, they just chase and bite. Coyotes do the same. Though coyotes don't chase or kill for fun like dogs do.
There are not "coy dogs" , only either pure coyotes or pure dogs. If another "attack" happened a few miles away, then it is definitely dogs. Someone is letting their dogs run or you have a group of feral dogs that were dumped and have banded together to form a safe group.
Ccursie, a "sighting" is NOT evidence. Put cans or pails over any tracks to preserve them if there are any. DEC absolutely will come out for a sighting with integrity.

    Bookmark   November 11, 2007 at 9:01AM
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Thanks for the advice to put pails over the tracks - I had not thought of that... hopefully I will not have an occasion where that is needed. (I don't want to see any more tracks along my fence line!) My view of my farm is no longer the safe haven I wanted it to be... even now, I am very cautious and will not let any single one of my farm hands work down there alone (That kind of defeats the purpose of hiring help so I can be elsewhere... but, so be it for the time being....)Last Saturday when my brothers walked the property into the wooded ravine, they found a significant fecal dropping with fur in it... obviously carnivorous... based on comparison to my pitbull and mastiffs - closer to mastiff size... whether it is coyote or cat, I do not know. Just collateral "evidence", - - of course I use that term loosely as I realize that true, believable evidence requires distinguishable, physical evidence. For me, however, I am not pretending that it was probably just a coyote (I've seen plenty of those!) - I will not let my guard down just because these large cats are not supposed to be in NY.....

    Bookmark   November 16, 2007 at 6:15PM
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Feces can be sent to the New York State Lab to be tested for DNA. Positive DNA is definitive evidence for any species.

    Bookmark   November 17, 2007 at 7:41AM
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I was surprised to see how much controversy there is about the existence of cougars in NY. As a licensed owner of several cougars, I have been called to help with the capture of "wild"cougars on 3 occasions in WNY. One of these cats was photographed by a trailcam on Oct. 11, but was killed by a car 8 days later on Rt 60 in Cassadaga. We are currently attempting to live trap 2 other individuals. This does NOT offer proof of their EXISTENCE in NY. If a viable population was here, someone would have seen young animals-they are slower, curious, and inexperienced hunters.
They easy availability of these animals at sales in Ohio has undoubtedly result in people buying them, finding out how difficult they are to keep and care for, and eventually releasing them. I know the two we are trying to catch are far too comfortable around people.
As to the conspiracy theorists who think the DEC and insurance companies are involved-use your heads and some logic-the liability is unacceptable, and cougars reproduce far too slowly to be a good candidate for population control. Wild cougars need several square miles of territory, without people in it. The areas where deer are a problem are, by definition, unsuitable for these cats.
The most reasonable person in these posts seems to be foxylady, so cut her some slack. I know her credentials re genuine, and she asks some excellent questions.
If I get any decent pictures of the 2 cats we are following, I will definitely post the for everyone.

    Bookmark   November 20, 2007 at 11:02PM
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Excellent points Bearman58. The average person doesn't realize that a true wild cougar is not going to be seen leaping across a road or stalking through a yard. An escaped or discarded exotic pet will. Also, Bearman58, an excellent point regarding the slow reproduction of these animals and the "consipracy theory" of DEC release. Deer are problems in the suburbs, exactly the places that true wild cougars will avoid, so a DEC release to control deer would be pointless. Foxlady and I as well, haven't said that there aren't an occasional exotic pet cougar that was released by an irresponsible owner. I too know a few people who have "pet" cougars. If one of them gets loose, the last thing these people are going to do is announce it. They can lose their permits if they have them. A person with an illegal exotic pet that escapes will never announce it either because of the liability and the legal implications. I would love to see authentic trailcam pics, Bearman58! I am experienced and have several large (refrigerator size) box traps if you ever need help, e-mail me

    Bookmark   November 21, 2007 at 8:59AM
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On the subject of mistaken identities-About 4-5 years ago, I was getting numerous reports of a large black cat here in Chaut. County. The descriptions were very consistent, the area was only a couple of sq miles, and most of the people seemed reliable. The only thing that seemed off was the perceived size of the animal-too small to be a leopard, too big to be a melanistic bobcat. Then an old classmate called and told me that he had video of the animal crossing his back yard-I would have been less startled to see a cat! It was a very dark phase Fisher. Now, Fishers have been absent from this area for a very long time, but I thought, stranger things have happened. Two months ago, I was talking to my local DEC guy, and it came up in conversation that he had seen fishers on at least three occasions in the last couple of years! As it turns out, the PA game Commission has had a release program for fishers, partly to help control the porcupine population in the Allegany Nat. Forest. Apparently, the stock they used was a dark phase that had historically been found there. They are doing quite well, and have expanded their territory into southern WNY. So-just because it looks like a cat, walks like a cat, and poops like a cat-it ain't necessarily a cat!
To johnmer: Thanks for the offer! and your comments about people being unwilling to own up to escapes and releases. Every time there is a report of livestock being attacked, the DEC is here to make sure my cat is home-if anything ever happens to her I have to offer proof positive of her transfer or death! If I didn't have permits, I'm not sure I would own up to it either, and I consider myself a generally responsible animal owner.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2007 at 5:42AM
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On the subject of Fishers, I have photos of Fisher tracks taken last Spring in Bliss, NY. I also have a photo of a Fisher in a tree taken in Colden a month ago. They are definitely here. Many people in this are don't know what a Fisher is (many think it is a bird- i.e Kingfisher) I saw a Fisher, also called a "Fisher cat" years ago during a very heavy snowfall ... I thought - did I just see what I think I saw? People are definitely fooled by Fishers - they don't know what they are so their mind comes up with the first animal they can think of.... "cougar!". The males are significantly larger than the females. I am looking forward to getting some in to rehabilitate in the future.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2007 at 8:20AM
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Foxladye-You will enjoy them to a point. If you ever get young Fishers, they are a blast, but from what I've seen of their SA cousins, the Tayra, it would be safer to raise a cougar. I found one at a pet store in FL about 30 years ago. It was just a baby, in a shipping crate, and no one even knew what she was! She had come in with a shipment of monkeys from C.America. Poor thing-so of course, I had to take her home! We kept herfor about 12 years. I was the only one able to handle her-even playing she was extremely rough, and unbelievably fast! I took my share of bites, and bruises, but I wouldn't have traded the experience for anything.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2007 at 5:15AM
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I have raised and rehabilitated plenty of mink and weasels - believe me, Bearman, I know what you are talking about. I have never been bitten, but I have seen what they do to something that is warm and moving and in front of their face. At a certain point of their development, one just knows "no more fingers". I am also hoping to get an orphaned porcupine to raise, I have had the opportunity to rehab some adult injured porcupines, as well as adult and orphaned Bobcats. Bobcats are pretty fierce, give me a coyote or a fox any day- they are a walk in the park compared to the mustelid and cat families. Did you see Marty Stouffers documentary about raising the two orphaned fishers? That show was outstanding.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2007 at 6:49AM
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Just a couple more things-I know this isn't on point about cougars. I did see that documentary-of course, editing makes it look all happy in the house, doesn't it!? About baby porcupines- In over 40 years of raising orphans, I have only seen one wild baby porcupine. I think it's because they are born so early, and in such remote areas, and the fact that they wean so young-they can be off milk at 4-5 wks. I have seen captive raised babies toddling around after their keepers however-very funny and chatty.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2007 at 6:14AM
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It always looks like a lot more fun than it really is on TV. People think rehabilitation is a lot more fun than it really is too. We deal with a lot more death and destruction than we do "raising furry little babies and having fun". It's not like that at all. It is actually very serious business and one needs to be very knowledgeable about each species to do it correctly and raise a releasable, healthy and successful wild animal. Marty Stouffers show didn't give the right impression of the proper way to raise wild animals that's for sure. Correctly done, these animals never should have been handled to the extent they were or allowed to become familiar with a human household. But, nonetheless, it was a very positive and enjoyable show, and in the end, he did the right thing by letting them go at a relatively early age. Making sure they were very familiar with the outdoors helped, and the remoteness of Martys home (not in a suburban development) certainly helped. Marty sure did have a nice series. I saw a Bobcat last night standing in the road for a moment before slipping off into the darkenss. I had seen Bobcat tracks on the edge of a pond near there this fall. My companion was surprised and said "How can you tell it was a Bobcat?" I said " The size, color and the short tail" - to which she exclaimed "Bobcats have a short tail? I didn't know that. So is that how you can tell them from a housecat or a cougar? " I just shook my head...

    Bookmark   November 24, 2007 at 9:38AM
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I have had several people tell me they have pictures or video of cougars.I've had people tell me they have seen cougars or no some one that has seen them. I've been told stories of someone knowing someone with a farm and they found missing calve dead in trees. Most of the video and picture stories contain images of BLACK cougars. Just in the past few weeks I had a co worker tell me when he was little he remembers his father going out to investigate the screams and cries out side there home in the dark of night. His claim was his father shot in the dark at this black cougar and it ran off.It had to be a black cougar because the father couldn't see it in the dark.As of today none of these people will show me these images.Of all these stories I believe only one of these people.That being from a person I know who isn't a BSer.He lives over the Pa boarder and saw it there.The rest of the stories I've heard are just that stories. There are a few flaws in the other stories that don't fit a cougar. First: They do not come in a black faze. Black panthers are not cougars they are leopards!Short of a zoo the closest you can find a leopard or the even rarer black panther today is the southern boarder of Texas and Mexico. Second: No other cat on earth can drag there kill up a tree but a leopard.Not even a cat as big as a tiger.Aside from all this I myself do believe there are cougars in NY.DEC lied for years about there being moose in NY.They changed there story when moose started flying through car windows.We finally have proof that there are gray wolf in NY. One was killed in the Adirondacks in 2000.DNA test proved it was one. Though the gray wolf isn't a native animal to NY it's interesting to see them here.NYs only native wolf is the Tweed Wolf. With luck I hope we can once and for all prove the cougar is back. Then we can get on trying to prove the UFO sightings. And yes I believe we are not alone

    Bookmark   November 24, 2007 at 4:01PM
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Leopards are Old World only-the black "panthers" to which you refer are Jaguars, up to 2X the size of the average leopard-Males can top 300lbs

    Bookmark   November 24, 2007 at 10:38PM
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opps!!! my mistake. Either way they do not live in the US. There has never been a reported sighting of a black cougar anywhere. This Thurs. I'm planning on attending a seminar at our local Gander Mt.It's about cougars in NY.It will be interesting to see what they have to say. The speakers are not DEC.

    Bookmark   November 25, 2007 at 3:08PM
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You are right about no black cougars-ever. It will be interesting to hear the views of someone outside the DEC-please post for us!

    Bookmark   November 26, 2007 at 6:41AM
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Ninthwheeler, what did investigators determine chased your horse? Did they say it was dogs? Were any tracks found?

    Bookmark   November 28, 2007 at 6:17AM
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To Tommy2117-I took a look athe photo you posted back in April-unfortunately, there is no mistaking a bobcat-look closely at the cats tail. I would say from its apparent size, its an adult male-I'd just be thrilled to get a photo of a bobcat-nice shot. Another thing to look at is the comparative leg length to body length-bobs are 'short coupled'. After you see both of them live or in good photos, you'll see what I mean.

    Bookmark   November 29, 2007 at 5:33PM
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I was unable to attend the cougar seminar a Gander Mt..Their seminar sheet just gave the dates and times. I found out days later in the news paper that there was a sign up sheet. It was full when I was able to return to the store. Sorry I missed it.Its looking like we need to put cams on our dashboards like the cops have. Then when a cougar runs out we have them on video.I,m really considering do just that.I make several trips a year to through the Catskills back roads and the Adirondacks.What a bonus to eagle watching, having a cougar run out and get him on video.

    Bookmark   November 30, 2007 at 7:04PM
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It's been quiet for a couple of weeks here, but now we have multiple sightings in a 3 sq mile area, and a reliable report of cougar chirps from someone who used to own a cougar. Hopefully, we'll get some tracking snow in the next few days. I'dlike to get a camera up and running. Will keep you all informed.

    Bookmark   January 1, 2008 at 6:33AM
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I live in upstate NY and this is the third year in a row we have had mountain lion tracks in our back yard. we also have neighbors who have seen a mountain lion in a feild across from their house laying on a big rock on a sunny day in mid october of 06'. now that there has been snow again we have had the tracks again so, i am going to try to put my outdoor camera up and see if i could get some pictures. we took pictures of the tracks not last year but the year before. i am just hoping to get it on camera this year.

    Bookmark   January 1, 2008 at 2:58PM
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Please post a photo of those tracks with a ruler for scale-that would be real evidence-something lacking in most of these sightings. Where in upstate NY are you located?

    Bookmark   January 1, 2008 at 5:38PM
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The history channel did a show on big cats as part of that monster series with bigfoot etc.

They found barely any evidence of mountain lions or cougars east of the Mississippi.

I would be willing to bet half of the people in here, couldnt tell a cougar from a mountain lion, or an oversized house or bobcat.

If you want proof, get your ass out in the woods at night with a few dead rabbits and a good predator call.

Don't forget your gun, or gun's.

    Bookmark   January 12, 2008 at 1:37PM
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Of course it would be tough to tell a cougar from a mountain lion Jim, they are the same animal :0)
And ljtomp, I am willing to bet that what you think are cougar tracks in your back yard are actually Bobcat tracks. Please post them with a ruler and we will help you determine.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2008 at 6:46AM
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The DEC only found tracks in the outdoor arena that were dog or coyote tracks but since there are dogs at the barn, nothing could be proven. I'm still too chicken to go out back near the woods and put up the trailcam I bought! lol And there have been other reports from people in the area seeing a large cat with 2 younger ones with it. Just wish somebody could get a picture or tracks. I advised a woman that claims she saw a large cat in the field across from her house to call me ASAP and I will try to go find tracks. Well, still treating my yearling's wounds, the older mare has healed, but the whole situation is a big PITA! I just wish I knew what really happened. I have only turned my horses outside a few times since the attack and my mare does not want to be out - she stays at the front of the pasture and always looks back towards the woods. Whatever it was came out of the woods. I viewed the pics of the trailcam that caught the bobcat attacking the deer and am wondering if maybe one tried to get the horses. Oh well, probably will never know.

    Bookmark   January 28, 2008 at 10:03PM
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Ninthwheeler,I will assume that your horses are vaccinated for rabies? It isn't unheard of for a Bobcat to have rabies. I am thinking that a normal bobcat would have the sense to see that a horse is too large to tackle, but one never knows what is going through their minds. I wonder if a rabid Bobcat did the job?

    Bookmark   January 29, 2008 at 8:32AM
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I have not visited this site for some time, but have really enjoyed catching up on all of the postings. I saw what I believe was a mountain lion in March of 2006 crossing a road in a wooded area while driving my school bus in the early morning. Since that time I have not seen the animal again, but in September of 2007 a student who rides my bus told me that he and his mother were walking their dog along a creek when they heard something approaching through tall grass several yards away. Tthey watched as a mountain lion stepped out into plain view. He said they immediately retreated back to their home and the animal did not appear to notice them. He said this happened approximately two weeks before school started and that they had seen the animal once before over the summer. This boy is 13 years old and is a level-headed kid not prone to making up stories.
The really interesting part of this story is that he lives on the same road where I saw the cat. This particular road is about 3 miles long and winding with fairly dense woods to one side and fields that border the creek on the other side. There are no interesections or crossroads anywhere along it except at each end. It is Broome County Route 13 also known as Nanticoke Drive, Endicott, NY if anyone wants to look at the area on mapquest.
I am sure of what I saw and believe this boy's story as well. I do have some questions for the Wildlife Biologists who visit this site, however. If there is a mountain lion prowling the area I'm talking about is it likely that it would remain in relatively the same area for a period of months or years? I always thought these animals were prone to roaming large distances. Is it possible that this is a cat that escaped captivity and therefore stays in it's "comfort zone"? There is a heavy deer and turkey population in the area.
I am always hopeful of seeing the cat again, though I doubt I ever will, and was quite shocked to hear my student's story. I know we do have bobcats in our area and it is possible that is what he saw. I particularly enjoyed foxlady's story about her friend being surprised to learn bobcats have short tales. A friend of mine told me she knew of a wolf that was roaming the woods behind her house. When I asked her to describe it I was pretty sure she was talking about a coyote (we have no wolves in our area). Then she asked what the difference was between a coyote a wolf and a fox and which animal would be worse to have roaming the woods.
I was shocked to learn that exotic pets are so readily available at auction in Ohio. That law should be changed. It is a dangerous hobby and a sad existence for, what should be, wild animals.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2008 at 10:39AM
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I have a friend who just had his Pig killed by something that can jump a 6 foot fence, and it shredded the pig. everywhere and 3/4 of it is gone. bones and all..
Tell me of an animal that can do this? in NY?
the neighbor across the street says he had his camera's record a big Cat with a Radio Collar? Now I don't think they come that way, they are not born that way.. I mean with a collar.
-- This is just north of North Bay NY.
Now in November.. I had a friend in Little Falls, who knew a farmer who shot two of the little beasts, and called the DEC, and they hung up on him.. So he dropped the cat carcass
in their front door with radio collars.. I cannot vouch for this testimony, But I could believe it.

I will work on getting either a picture or a Carcass..
And I will post.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2008 at 10:48PM
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To rt13-Mountain lions stake out a large (up to 6sq mi) territory, depending on prey availability, so some evidence shouldn't be hard to find, They leave 'signposts' at the borders of their territory, and they will frequent the most heavily used game trails.

To ml-killer-you won't likely get either the photo or the carcass-In just the last 10 years, I have heard the story of the 'guy who knows a farmer who shot 2 mt lions with radio collars, and he dropped them off at the DEC, and they were never seen again'-at least 11 times. Why are there no photos of these corpses? Why wasn't the local newspaper contacted? Because its a bogus story grown up from the occasional collared bobcat that is killed or trapped. NY does have a tracking program for those! BTW, coyotes could easily do that to a pig a six foot fence just helps them keep the pig in-they are very intelligent, and they quickly figure put new tricks. Also, a single cat would have a hard time eating 3/4 of a pig at a meal. Coyotes usually hunt in at least pairs, and are capable of gorging on a kill-besides, the most likely answer is usually the most likely answer-Occam's Razor.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2008 at 5:50AM
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Bearman58 - Thank you for the info. Nanticoke Creek runs for miles north of my sighting location and the farther north you go, the more rural the area becomes. I suppose there is a possibility that this animal does frequent the same locations then.
Greenwood Park is also located several miles north not far from the creek and people have told me they have seen and heard the cat(s) there. Some have told me the story of the DEC releasing cats in that park, which I find totally insane because it is heavily used by campers and recreationalists. I doubt anyone, much less a government agency, would do something so irresponsible. Too bad we can't completely weed out the urban legends to focus on the credible stories.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2008 at 10:20AM
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Ya think?! If the DEC tried something like that(and I can't see a reason why)and someone were to get hurt or killed, they might as well hand over the keys to the treasury(not that NY has much at the end of the year) It's just not plausible. I do have a short story to tell though-My local DEC officer told me that when he was in college, he was involved in a project to determine if any of the Lynx that were released in the Adirondacks were still in the area. They found only lots of bobcats-BUT-he did get a cast of a mountain lion pawprint! Pretty cool. By the way-NY, in its infinite wisdom, bought the lynx from Canadian trappers who were contracted to catch them alive. Unfortunately, most of these cats were killed crossing roads as they headed NW trying to get home. Of 16 released, 8 were found this way.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2008 at 6:57PM
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Today, 03-May-08 around 6PM, my wife and I were walking our dog and we heard the crows/black birds making a lot of noise in the trees. When we turned around, we saw what looked like a bobcat/cougar gracefully run across the street. The crows seemed to fly overhead to where the big cat went but quieted down very quickly thereafter. We are in Hyde Park, NY (Dutchess County). Our townhouse development has deer, coyotes, and turkeys -- this is the first time we've seen a bobcat/cougar. Is this possible?

    Bookmark   May 3, 2008 at 10:20PM
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It's rare even to see the fairly common bobcat, so consider yourself lucky to have seen it! The two cats are very different however, so identifying it should be easy. Cougars ARE 4-6 Feet long WITHOUT the tail, and bobcats have a tiny tail, 4-6 inches long. Bobcats are generally 25-30lbs, whereas cougars are 80-175lbs.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2008 at 6:00AM
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To foxladye- on the subject of mis identification. The local dog catcher called me recently to ask if I would take in a puppy found on the side of the road. He had taken it to a local dog groomer , and they both agreed that it was a pup born prematurely. Imagine my surprise when I looked in the container to fimd a baby gray squirrel-laughed my ass off for days every time I thought about my new 'puppy'! BTW, I just saw a video of a Fisher taken in Lakewood, down by Jamestown-great footage, right in peoples backyards!

    Bookmark   May 25, 2008 at 5:21AM
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I have read all the postings so far. I agree with bearman and foxy to an extent. I do find that people do tend to recycle stories. Its like the playground game. You start out with a phrase, whisper it in the ear of the person sitting to your right, it goes all the way around the circle and by the time it reaches the end, it's not even close to what was originally said. I also agree that many sightings are subject to misidentification although I can not understand how you can mix up a bobcat and a cougar. Thats like mixing up a Rottweiler and a pug to me! But, , that's neither here nor there.
I also live in an area in NY that has had "sightings" and has this town all in a tither.
Have I personally seen the cougar? NO
Do I believe that there is one around? YES
I do not have to see it to believe it. I can not see the air I breathe either, but obviously its there. I guess you have to go on your gut instict about who and where you hear these stories. Do I believe half the people that tell the stories? Absolutely not! Would I believe a man I've known all my life that has never once lied to me or anyone else for that matter? Absolutely!
I'm not saying that you have to believe everyone you hear a story from, but it's not fair to discredit them either. You don't know them. I'm doubting that you will believe me either. But thats your right.
The man I referred to earlier is my uncle. A farmer yes and it is often assumed that since he is a farmer he is of simple mind. I will tell you that man is a genius and by no way shape or form simple! He knows the difference between a bobcat and a cougar. He told me and very few others, about his sighting. He was heading into a corn field one day when the sound of the tractor must have spooked it and sent it darting into the woods that bordered one side of an adjacent pasture. It was not all that far away. Did he feel the need to run with this story? Call the papers? The DEC? No.
Did he feel the need to run and get a cast or picture of the prints? No.
He and I are of like minds, if they are here, deal with it. What are we really going to be able to do about it anyway. Go on a mad manhunt or cathunt, whichever way you want to look at it? Some say what if attacks us....what if it kills a kid...who do we blame?
We have bears. We have wolves. Heck, even a cornered deer can kill a person if you want to get technical.
What if they attack you? What if they kill a child? Who do you blame? The simple matter is all animals are running out of land. At somepoint, in someplace run ins are going to happen. How can any intelligent person say that that CAN NOT be in NY? Do not get me wrong, I would not like to come face to face with a cougar. I'm sure if I did there would DEFINITELY be "traces" that I was there.. if you catch my drift :0). But I'm more afraid of some neighboring DOMESTIC DOGS attacking me than any cougar, bear or wolf. People tend to dwell on the "what-ifs" instead of taking care of the ready and ever present every day dangers simply because they can "see" them. If you are walking through the woods alone, you should be protecting yourself..Not just because the ever elusive cougar could be there but for the everyday animals that can just as likely cause harm. Its NEVER a good idea to go solo! And any experienced and half way intelligent hunter would know that.
But...back to the point. As I stated before, I really do not have any proof that the cougar is here that I can give you. But, on the other hand, I'm not sure that I, nor anyone else that really cares about animals, WOULD show anyone proof. That really would ensue the "cathunt". Every scared person or "trophy" hunter would be after it just for the sheer purpose of saying they killed it! And what is the point of that? So they can stuff it and put it in their living room? For the 15 minutes of fame on the local news? Forgive me, but I think it's life should be worth more than that. It is not its fault it was born or that it's forced to live in these times when land is hard to come by. But enough of my preaching. Take care.

    Bookmark   October 13, 2008 at 10:14PM
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Please check out this sight. It has a picture and a statement from the DEC that admits it could be a mountain lion. It's a nice article.

    Bookmark   October 14, 2008 at 6:37PM
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the dec is not admitting to there being cougars in ny. there was a siting in the town of niagara a month ago and comfirmed to be a large cat by the town police. i asked a dec officer if its true that there are cougars around here he told me no i asked him if someone shot one, his words were if they shot one there would be consquences. my question is that if they dont exist why couldnt take the dangerous animal down???

    Bookmark   October 22, 2008 at 11:11PM
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Origin Niagara,
I missed the new story so I did a search and found the WKBW article. More interesting though is the info I found from Ontario. There have been lots of sightings. There is even positive DNA from scat from the Port Colborne area which isn't that far across the border. The article I'm linking of course says it could be a loose pet, but from other articles I looked at, there have been tracks found before and I doubt it is all from loose pets.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2008 at 9:58PM
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Late summer of 1999 my two sons,my wife and I were driving up the abandoned road off the dead end road that leads to our undeveloped property.The road was in poor condition so we were driving slowly in our noisy old truck,all four of us in the front seat,moving along at about walking speed.To the east of us was state forest land,to the west of us was an eight acre field of cow corn six or seven feet tall.We had owned this 93 acres of woods and fields for five years.It's in the hills overlooking Lamoka and Waneta lakes.Full of deer,turkey,coyote,fox and lots of other wildlife that we have seen and black bear that others have seen.Whenever we see any animal we stop moving or whatever we are doing so we can see them for as long as possible.When something stepped out of the state land onto the road in front of us I tapped the brake pedal and said "A deer",except it wasn't a deer.It was a full grown cougar.It walked out onto the road,stopped and looked at us and then casually walked into the cornfield.Head to tail it was as long as the narrow road was wide.And what a tail it had!Maybe three seconds or so for this to happen.After it went into the corn we just looked at each other in disbelief and I said "That was a cat!".We were all stunned and I just sat there for a minute before moving again.Lots of "Wow!","Nobody's gonna believe this!","No way!" and "That was cool!".After composing myself I went to look for a track but no luck there,it was too dry for any.None of us had even heard or thought anything about cougars around here and didn't say anything to anyone for a week or so.I work at home and don't see much of anyone anyway.A week later I was working on our property when the old fellow we bought it from came up to see what we had been doing.After an hour or so of talking he said "Hey,I gotta ask you something,have you seen a cat up here?".I told him we'd seen a BIG cat.He then excitedly told me of a few of his friends who had seen it also!I was glad to hear that others had seen it,not that there was any doubt as to what we had seen.After telling a few people what we had seen and getting that "YOUR FULL OF ----" look,I didn't say much more about it.We don't know if it was a pet someone had tuned loose or what.I do know that I started taking a gun and knife with me whenever I went up to work or play and always kept them close by.I don't hunt and would not harm one in any way unless truly attacked as I think it's wonderful that they might be making a comeback.I hope this is the case and what we saw wasn't a freed pet but I guess I'll never know.It makes being in the woods much more exciting and keeps you alert to your surroundings.I never cared if anyone believed us or not,the people I care about,my family,saw it with me and it was an experience we'll never forget.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2008 at 10:20PM
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origin niagara county .. how sad and awful this world would be if we "took down" every dangerous animal.

Humans could be considered dangerous animals.

    Bookmark   October 31, 2008 at 4:27PM
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Sometime in early August this year I was taking a detour through the hills in Colden (travelling up the hill on Heath just up from the intersection with Hayes Hollow) due to a bridge being repaired. As I drove up the hill I noticed something on the left side of the road just up ahead. I must have been looking down at the radio or something because at first sight while not looking directly at it I thought "fox"! but as I looked up to get a better view it was quite obvious that this was far too large for a fox so the next thought that entered my head was "coyote"! But as I focused on the front of the animal as it swiftly crossed the road, I noticed that this animal was actUALLY QUITE A BIT LARGER than my 80 lb lab who was in the truck with me, was beige in color and as it ran to the right and I panned to the left still looking for the typical Coyote tail, I saw a LARGE, LONG, and thick ROUND tail. In an instantt he animal gracefully leapt over an approx. 3-4 foot berm that was on the right side of the road, which then drops off fairly steeply down the hill. Thinking I saw a mountain lion, but unsure, later when I returned home I looked all over the internet and was nearly certain that it had to be a BIG cat. EXCEPT for all of the articles saying that it could not have been. Fast forward to Oct. 5th. I was on my way to Salamanca for a Brooks & Dunn concert when a Coyote ran in front of the truck at a distance just greater than my sighting of the "cat" several weeks earlier. As I pointed it out to my friend everything about it made me instantly certain that it indeed was a mountian lion that I had seen earlier. The size difference was the first thing, the obvious HUGE difference in the tails, the color, but most of all was simply the complete difference in the way the animal moved. Both were running at a pretty good pace but the earlier sighting was so much more fluid and smooth. Ther was no comparison whatsoever. So.... who knows???

    Bookmark   November 23, 2008 at 10:12PM
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Concerning the photo of a "mountain lion" in THE FREEMANS JOURNAL"(2004 I believe) in Ostego County. I copied and enlarged the photo. At first I was sure it was a cougar.
Then I started to notice the details: pointed ears, short tail with a black tip, large white patch on the back of the ear. I even saw black spots on the white under the neck.
At first the tail looked long until enlarged, then it shows that most of that is the hind leg.
Cougars have rounded ears, the backs which are a solid black or gray and do not include white patches as found in lynx and bobcat(google "cougar ears").
This is a photo of a bobcat. Not all bobcats show distinct spots as adults and they come in a variety of colors from light gray to dark brown.

    Bookmark   February 26, 2009 at 12:35PM
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This is my first post(ever) and it will be a bit long - sorry. I have enjoyed reading these posts and found many of them very interesting. I have been afield in Southern NYS for many years and had always dismissed stories of mountain lions. Recently I read an interesting article that suggested mountain lions MIGHT be expanding east. It further suggested that they MIGHT be able to eventually get all they way across the country again. I think escaped/released animals play into the equation. I think misidentification must also be a part. Hoaxes/lies/frauds, I guess so, too. Everytime I think I am 'convinced' one way some bit of information casts a doubt. The idea that the DEC is somehow involved with insurance companies? Nonsense. Although, I have not always had positive interactions with them reagrding questions I have had before about other things(they are not always quick to respond and sometimes you have to talk to multiple people before you get a straight answer). A friend and I have decided to do a little research ourselves in order to determine what we think about this issue of mountain lions in NYS. I would appreciate some suggestions as to research material sources(track identification, habits, diet, etc). And any localities that seem to have a high concentration of credible sightings. We hope to spend as much time as we can afield on our "quest"(knowing we will likely only get some hiking in and maybe some nice photos), and would want to concentarte our time in 'likely' areas. Thanks for reading and I hope to read, and post, more soon.

    Bookmark   March 2, 2009 at 6:37PM
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Black cougar sighting on March 10th 5:30am.

I went out to do chores on March 10, 2009 to do chores at 5:35-5:40am. The horses would not leave their stalls to go outside. It was really odd becasue normally if something is frightening them they run around, snort and then go back in their stalls. I left their back doors open and went to work. A co-worker saw me and told me at 5:30am he sighted a black cougar on our property. It had a long tail and small head. I showed him some pictures and he said it looked like a cougar.

I shared this story with my family and my dad told me on March 9th in the morning he sighted a black cougar 2 miles from our house. It ran across the road in front of a car.

I sighted a black cougar 2 months ago in the same area my dad claims he saw it. It was in a corn field. My co-worker friend saw the cougar in the same corn field 2 weeks ago.

Now I know there is "proof in the pudding". The cougar likes the corn fields because of all the deer. Our property is full of deer so I know if it is a cougar it will be back for a snack. The thing is will we see it.

We are going on a nature walk this weekend to see if we can gather evidence. (scat, hair, dead deer, prints, markings on trees) If we find anything we will post it here. Until then it is just another story of someone seeing a black cougar.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2009 at 3:38PM
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dear tortlemon....

Unless you have a some VERY NICE equipment... I am unsure as to how you can blow that picture up enough to notice all that you stated and still have high enough quality to make such a determination as to the identity of the cat. I would imagine that you would need access to the ORGINAL picture...or...the original digital picture emailed to you. If in fact the latter of the two happened... would you please send it to me? I'd like to blow that picture up and make a determination on my own, or at least see what type of quality picture you would need to make such a decision.


    Bookmark   May 9, 2009 at 4:24PM
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No special equipment. Just obvious details that anyone can see. Showed a co-worker who saw it as a cougar until I pointed out the details. The ears alone are enough to rule out a cougar. Cougars have rounded ears with black or gray backs, often outlined in white. Bobcats have tufted ears(that make them look pointed) with a bright white marking on the back outlined in BLACK.

    Bookmark   May 14, 2009 at 2:16PM
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Sorry to blow this argument wide open, but there are a few cougars roaming the area. I've personally seen a picture of a hunter and his deer size black cougar taken in the fall 08, Sanitaria Springs, NY. My mother who is a rural mail carrier has seen one twice. The first sighting being more then three years ago. The second was last year. She is a rural mail carrier, and her route takes her through a lot of back country. For her to confuse a bobcat (like the ones she confronted around are barn and farm for the last 40yr)with a deer size cat with a mountain lion tail at 50 feet is ridicules. Maybe when people recognize their back, they will gain the moral authority to find and go after the people shooting them. Every hunter knows the legal implication in shooting a protected cat, how every some cant resist the thrill of killing something as awesome and
magnificent as a big cat. These people are not talking and your helping them get away when you try to convince the public their not here. That goes for you too, DEC!

    Bookmark   May 18, 2009 at 9:43AM
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I live in Clarence NY and have seen a few of these mountain lions, lynx or bobcat. Well, I am not very experienced in these matters, but the more I research this, the more I believe what I saw is a mountain lion. It was a large cat (40-60 lbs I would guess, long tail reachig the ground and then curling upward. On one occasion the one I saw was stark black, the other occasion it appeard to be a reddish brown, or just plain darker brown. I have photographs of its footprint on my deck. I had found that it knocked the grease trap off of my grill on the porch, ate the grease, stepped in it and left a perfect footprint on the deck stairs. Another strange occurence we have found on our property is large piles of feces high up in a very large willow tree in our yard. There were several different piles, all in the same tree, all in an area where a large branch will join with the trunk. The feces contained a large amount of hair like it had been eating quite a few rabbits. We generally see this animal a couple times a year, but it has been becoming more frequently as of yet. Probably due to our curiousity. Anyone that can offer any type of information on this topic and my encounters would be much appreciated. I am in the process of trying to get a photo of this animal on a trail cam, and if I do I will be sure to post it here. Either that or a good photo with the digital camera if luck allows. I can be reached at Thanks, Jeff.

    Bookmark   June 2, 2009 at 7:59AM
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I live in Candor NY (Tioga County) betweek Owego and Ithaca and a couple years ago (it may have been 06 because that's the year we moved into our house) my mother was visiting and swears she heard a mountain lion or bob cat and then heard and saw something run off. My husband thinks she's crazy, but maybe not. Has anyone heard about mountain lions in Tioga County?

    Bookmark   June 13, 2009 at 4:42PM
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Now I don't know about cougars(mountain lions) being in NY, but where I live there was a sighting or two and this worried my parents because my dad's an old farm boy and my mom she's just that way. My dad said that if a cougar had the chance it would take a small child for an easy meal. Andover, NY is a small town and back in 2005 I think there were rumors going around that the DEC released some cougars in the area and they may have also released some panthers too. My mom almost hit one with her van two or three years ago. I wouldn't be surprised if the DEC releases large predatory animals with saying anything to the public, anything is possible.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2009 at 10:11PM
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My family and I have seen a mountain lion 3 times in the last 5 years ...right in the yard ! Seemed to be passing through , it walked through the yard , and across the road to the open field , it was very cautious , quite and leary acting .We watched through the window ~ I live in Wyoming County .I have seen everything from Coyoties , Bob cats , raccoons , you name it ...this was a mountain lion , I think its very important for others to realize that they are around , I have young children beware out there !

    Bookmark   June 21, 2009 at 11:08PM
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Mountain lions absolutely exist in NYS, we had one here a few years ago that was hit by a car, it was wearing a radio collar. We had at least one killed by a farmer who was losing livestock over a period of months, it was also wearing a collar. In both cases the DEC was called and they denied any involvement or knowledge, yet they came out to retrieve the carcass and their radio collars, and they even went as far as paying the farmer who lost some of his animals. And at our hunting camp we see large cat tracks pretty regularly, the people in the area have seen them off and on over the years.

To say that they don't exist and try to brush the sightings off as a "bigfoot" conspiracy is extremely ignorant of the facts.

    Bookmark   July 10, 2009 at 12:35PM
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On Sunday July 12, 2009 my wife and I were walking our dogs in a semi rural area just south of the Village of Chittenango, Madison County. As we emerged from a wooded trail into an opening between two farm fields we both spotted the rear end of a big cat as it darted away... unfortunately we did not see the head. We have both large and small dogs and I'd guess the animal we saw was in the range of 50 to 70 pounds. It had a uniform grayish color and a long tail. I hope I get to see this big cat again!

    Bookmark   July 22, 2009 at 8:20AM
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Lots of interesting postings lately. In response to the question from the Candor woman in Tioga Co., I cannot personally verify information about mountain lions in Tioga Co., but I have friends who live in very rural parts of Newark Valley which is in Tioga and they have said they have heard and caught glimpses of large cats in the surrounding woods and fields.
Check out this link from a man in Broadalbin, NY (near the Adirondacks). Amazing photos that seem real to me.

    Bookmark   July 28, 2009 at 11:46AM
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I checked out the link you posted. Same old photos that have been going around the internet for a long time. They were taken in Lander, Wyoming; see this link:,
'To say that they don't exist and try to brush the sightings off as a 'bigfoot' conspiracy is extremely ignorant of the facts'
- facts require proof and you seem to have none.

    Bookmark   July 29, 2009 at 12:15PM
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Tues August 4th,09....After a black bear encounter on the way to the summit of Alander mountain,we found mountain lion tracks on a game trail.These tracks were 200 foot from where we made our make shift shelter. There was what I believe to be a mother with a cub. 2 sets of tracks 2 differant sizes.(Which means theres also a male in the area)My hand is aprox. 4 1/2 x 9 inches,and the track filled my palm,& then some.[/img][/url]

    Bookmark   August 5, 2009 at 1:00PM
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Sounds like bear tracks. Way too big for a mountain lion. This is off a site on tracks:

Tracks: Mountain lion tracks are generally round with a diameter from 2.75 to 3.75 inches.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2009 at 12:08PM
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monday august 10, 2009 at about 10pm i was outside of my vestal,ny home (far reaches of tracy creek rd...collins rd) and i heard a growling sound near me. it sounded like a very big cat. a cougar to be more exact. kind of like the ones i've heard on tv. now, i've heard plenty of cats growling and fighting over the years and this was much, much louder and very deep sounding. it was loud and menacing sounding enough to cause me to jump out of my chair and make a bee-line to the nearest door. i stopped at the door and turned around to see if i could tell what it was but i could not see beyond the light from my overhead 60 watt bulb. i glanced around and then "it" growled again 2 times and each growl sounded like it was moving from right to left in front of me. those 2 growls were louder than the 1st and "it" sounded more irritated. so, i decided to get inside. has anyone in this local vestal area seen or heard anything? someone told me that a mountain lion was seen in choconut,pa not too long ago. ???

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 2:11AM
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Years ago I was camping in Big Cypress Nat. Park in the Everglades of Florida where there is a known population of cougars. About the same time of night, while sitting by the campfire I heard the same thing. It was loud enough and scary enough to make us jump up and our dog went nuts. I grabbed a gun and a spotlight and a few minutes later spotted its eyes a hundred yards down the dirt road. There was no mistaking that sound. I don't know what a bobcat can growl like but I doubt it is anything like a cougar.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 7:01AM
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Try this link for Bobcat sounds.

This one for Cougar
Try if the links don't work right.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2009 at 10:54AM
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Look folks, it's real simple. In parts of the country where cougars REALLY DO live, such as Calfornia, there is solid proof found all the time. Lions killed by cars, old lions that died of old age (they all die sometime, and leave bodies), dens full of cubs, lion skeletons or bones, lion skins, dead animals killed by lions (they kill in identifiable ways) hunters who illegally shoot them and lots of wildlife camera get their pic, or security camera. There are even lion attacks on people, and LOTS AND LOTS of real, believable photographs. in New York, nothing like this is ever found. Why? Because they aren't here. I saw Elvis last week walking with the Loch Ness Monster. People who have sightings should get their eyes examines, I'm an eye doctor and lots of people come in my office with 20/400 vision and think they see just fine. These people would see a deer and think it's a lion. Get over it, there would be proof if they were here. No proof means they aren't here, but there sure are a lot of dumb who think they see them. I live in the Adirondacks. Morgan Wright

    Bookmark   May 7, 2010 at 5:05PM
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here is some good info if you come across one

    Bookmark   May 8, 2010 at 8:33AM
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That was pretty funny msrfrog1 but I'd offer my wife before my kids.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2010 at 11:54PM
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We spotted a mountain lion in Hamlin, NY, right off Rt. 19 where the town just put in a new trail system.

We had a similar experience to others posted here. Two of saw the cat as were hiking today.

At first, I spotted the cat as it ran across the main path, but I thought it was a VERY big fox, because of the red color (not really thinking cougars here).

After we got deeper into the woods, on a side trail, we came across it dead on about 100 feet ahead, but thinking at first it was a deer -- until I saw the cat's head, and thought geez, that looks like tiger. Then, I realized OMG --that is, it's a mountain lion!

We both saw it at the same time, and I never turned, tucked tail, and ran so fast! We hauled out of there scared skinny that cat saw us.

We made a narrow escape, when I saw that head my animal instinct kicked in, I knew we were in big danger.
I felt like we were back on the steppes of Africa suddenly exposed, like in a dream, where you are suddenly confronted with an attacker.

So there you have it, sighting of cougar along Lake Ontario, western NY, about 30 miles northwest of Rochester. Anyone else care to verify?

    Bookmark   May 31, 2010 at 11:16PM
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We live in Florida and have a camp on Sacandaga Lake off of South Shore Rd in the Town of Day. We also have a camp in the Ocala National Forest where I have seen and heard Florida Panther (basically a mountain lion). The scream of a panther is shrilling and unmistakable. Around two years ago upon our arrival at our place on Sacandaga around 11:30 PM, while exiting the car with our two dogs, we were greeted by that same scream from the woods behind us. Startled, and fearing the scream came from a big cat, my wife hastened our barking mini dachshunds into the camp. I got a glimpse of the animal and could tell it was big with a long tail, but couldn't confirm it was a big cat. A few nights later, our neighbors behind us were enjoying a campfire when the scream came from the woods above them. Their full grown boxer came flying out of the woods and ran into the camp at full speed, refusing to come back out. I walked over to join their discussion about what could have made such a noise and have terrified a their boxer so much. I gave them my opinion and don't know if they are believers or not. I do know they have no other explanation. Others have suggested that it may have been a Fisher which has been sighted locally but I doubt a 10 or 15 pound animal would frighten a boxer too much. I for one, am 90% sure there are mountain lions, cougars, panthers, or some type of big cat in the Adirondacks.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2010 at 12:27PM
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I saw a mountain lion cross directly in front of my truck on my way to work last Tuesday morning. I was southbound on the 990 in Amherst, near the Sweet Home Road exits, just past the big retention pond. No question about what I saw. It was a very large cat with a long tail. He crossed in front of me, perhaps 50 feet away, then I watched him in the side view mirror as he crossed through the median and then the northbound lanes. I have been an outdoorsman all my life, and observe wildlife all the time. I know what I saw, regardless of what anyone might say, officially or unofficially. It was cool to see what others have been talking about!!!

    Bookmark   July 13, 2010 at 10:05AM
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If you go on youtube there is a video of a mountain lion in Massena, NY. Type in Big Cat in Massena. This is the real deal!!!!!! I am so glad that someone finally got proof that mountain lions live in NY.

    Bookmark   September 3, 2010 at 5:05PM
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Hunters and outdoorsmen/women see Mountain Lions all the time in the Southern Tier. The DEC won't admit it, but they're there.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2010 at 9:19PM
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I just spoke to a woman today who claims she seen one in Sullivan County last year. I was pretty shocked to overhear her conversation. I questioned her about it and she told me the story. She said she was positive it was a mountain lion. It was no bob cat. She said it was huge and she didn't know why she wasn't attacked. It was only about three or four feet infront of her. It just left.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2010 at 11:03PM
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Heykat is right, DEC will cover it up.
One day I was walking along the susquehanna river
Ive lived right along the river all my life
Came along a dead lizard about 2 1/2 feet long
Decided to bring it to my house and look it up online.
I found out it was called a Hell-Bender, So I called the DEC. They were really interested (I would call it freaking out) and they told me to freeze it, they came at 5am the next day, knocked on my door, walked in and took it. I tried to ask them a few questions but he just kept walking and then left. I have pictures of it by the way. Well anyway, about the Mountain lions, I am a very avid hunter, I was talking to a good friend of mine a while back that i havent seen for a while and he told me this exact thing
"I was hunting up on grange hall rd. in kirkwood this past december and I seen a wierd track heading up the hill, I followed it and there was a mountain lion perched on a rock ledge about 13ft from me. So I shot it. Called the DEC and they came and took it without saying a word, they didnt ticket me or anything." Ive known this guy for a really long time, and I also know he wouldnt lie about something like that. So I decided, if theres one then theres more. Im going up there, right before deer season starts and im setting up night/day game cams, a predatore call and some sents to attract one. I hunt up there every year and Ive heard strange noises 'calls' ive never heard in my life over the past 3 years. I know what bobcat sound like aswell as any other predatory animal in upstate ny sence ive been hunting/tracking for so long. I will post any pictures from my game cam i come across.

    Bookmark   September 12, 2010 at 6:34PM
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Wow. You have to love this guy. "So I shot em." Nice guy. Had to do that I guess. Just his nature. The DEC came and took it away too, fast and mysterious. What is this Area 51? They should have ticketed him.

    Bookmark   September 16, 2010 at 5:38PM
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The Susquehanna is within the range of the hellbender salamander. But they are pretty rare within most, if not all, of their range. That's why the DEC "freaked out". Not because they were trying to cover up the existence of some dangerous foreign invader - which is what hunterbill seems to be implying.

"So I shot it." People like that should have their guns taken away from them.

    Bookmark   September 16, 2010 at 8:43PM
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This is an old thread but I thought I would respond. I live in St Lawrence County, about 8 miles from Potsdam near County Rt 47. About 4 years ago I saw a mountain lion/cougar. It was pacing along the edge of the woods and open field. It had a long tail. Not a bob cat.

Also, in 1973, I saw a black panther. I asked an old farmer who lived near us about it and he said yes, there were sightings.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2010 at 10:07PM
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I would like to report a new sighting. On Saturday afternoon, October 9, 2010 a fishing buddy of mine was on the East Branch of the Delaware, a little below Downsville NY, when he saw a "deer" swimming across the river and didn't think much of it except that he noticed a canoe a little further upstream. When the canoeists finally paddled down to him, they apparently were quite shaken and explained to him that it was clearly a mountain lion that they saw in the river.

He is the same person that reported a sighting from his car and fairly close up about 10 years ago in June. This was a lion that was crossing the secondary road that runs along the East Branch between the villages of Fish's Eddy and East Branch. It was approaching the river and he felt certain that it was a cougar by the size, color, and length of its tail. My friend is also a hunter and has general knowledge of wildlife.

I buy into the theory that some people have purchased cougar kittens from certain western states where the trade is legal, then realized after a year or so that these animals eat and awful lot and simply release them. Or that some people have willfully released them because having lions in the Catskills would either help to control the deer population or help to reinstate the wilderness appeal of the mountains.

But I don't think the DEC should discount every report. There are some folks who can't tell a cougar from a golden retriever but many sightings come from people who hunt, fish, love nature, etc. and have considerable knowledge. I would bet that, in the aggreate, the hours spent in the field by these people far exceed the time spent away from the road or office by the DEC.

    Bookmark   October 12, 2010 at 2:04PM
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This picture was taken by a friend of a friend in mid-September in a rural area near Uniondale, Pa, which is NE PA. I haev not yet confirmed that is a mountain lion, what do you think.
In the meantime, I have had talked to at least two people here in NE PA who think they say lions near Moscow, Pa and a few other second hand rumored sightings.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2010 at 10:41PM
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A mountain lion expert confirmed that the above sighting is a house cat. When the photo is enlarged you can see white spots on the cat. Interesting, because I never saw a house cat with such well developed musculature, also, not furry, streamlined tail doesn't seem typical for a house cat. Also, the cat seems to be in the neighborhood of 50 lbs. There is something called a feral house cat, or wild house cat, which this cat very well might be.

    Bookmark   October 18, 2010 at 10:26AM
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bernd ny zone5

Compare the cat simply to the leaves on the bush or tree, the size seems to be that of a house cat.

    Bookmark   October 18, 2010 at 6:48PM
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foxladye or whatever. i live in steuben county and am a heavy machinery mechanic. i personally know the farmer who's brother shot the cow killing cat that you metioned the bottom line is there are cougars in nys. if you dont believe it ..... spend more time in the woods. yes they are elusive and dont like human contact but they are here. when i reported my sighting to the dec. they told me there are no cougars in nys but if u shoot it... draw your own conclusion. you seem to be doing that anyway. ive called them in while predator hunting and i know the difference between a mountain lion and a bobcat after hunting the bobs in the catskills and dacks for years. my friends daughter was stalked by a cat that weighed 100+ pounds in their remote property and had he not showed up when he did, i'm convinced he would have lost his daughter!!!!

    Bookmark   October 30, 2010 at 11:12AM
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Just joined this forum today because I wanted to share what I saw last night (12/14/10) on my way back from JFK...literally only about 1/2 hour - 45 minutes outside of NYC: A mountain lion.

It was on the side of the road on the Hutchinson River Parkway between mile markers 11 and 12 (right before exit 21, in New Rochelle). My girlfriend and I at first thought it was a deer (thing was huge); but then, when we got closer it crouched down, just like a cat...and then we got a good look at it. Definitely not a Domestic Cat, Bobcat, Lynx, or any other similar feline...this was much, much larger, and had a definitively long tail, and the facial features of a Catamount.

I grew up in Vermont, and have seen all nature of Eastern animals in the wilds of the NE...but never a Mountain Lion.

I assumed that there was some sort of re-introduction effort on the part of a nature conservancy or something...but then I realized my surroundings: the (relatively) highly populated suburbs of Westchester county! I figured that the local families should be notified to keep their poodles inside. So, right after seeing it, I called the cops, and reported it. They said they would go investigate...but I highly doubt they'll find anything, unless the Catamount did decide to cross the road, and got hit in the process.

When I got home later that night, I was still curious as to how many Catamounts were estimated to be living in NY (again, I assumed that there had been a controlled release for re-population purposes), so I hit Google and found this site/conversation on the topic. Pretty wild that people are denying that they are out there.

I had to run back to Boston in the early AM...but, if I had the time, I would have gone back out to where I saw it, and taken tracks today. If any of you Mountain Lion enthusiasts feel like doing so - please do! It was freezing cold last night, and only a light dusting of snow on the ground; so I can't guarantee that you'll find tracks, but if you do, please share them with me!!

Also, if anyone has intentions of going out and hunting this animal; you should be ashamed of yourself. Shooting a rare/endangered animal is not only illegal, it is also sick.

At any rate, please continue to share sightings on this thread (especially any in Westchester County) - would love to hear how that Catamount is doing!

    Bookmark   December 15, 2010 at 5:09PM
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Just heard from two different people about seeing mountain lions about three miles outside of Hudson ny. Both sitings were on the same road. Still hard to believe.

    Bookmark   December 21, 2010 at 12:00AM
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I too have heard the stories of mountain lions/cougers in Tioga County. It didn't suprise me at all. My dog was killed a couple nights ago. A family member has a tracker friend who is confident of cougar tracks up on our hill in berkshire. He also explained our dogs wounds without seeing or being told what they were. He feels there were two cats. They will continue to follow tracks and look in the area. We also installed a motion camera on our back deck to see if anything comes back to claim the prey that was left behind. Our dog was chained to his dog house because he had been runnign through the invisible fence. We have a lot of stateland around us and recently saw our first bear. We hear the coyotes every night, and ruled them out as our killer. Our other dog is terrified to go outside now. Won't go alone. If the tracks survive the night, we are going to take pics in the AM. Something was rustling the brush tonight and we didn't feel safe trying to do it tonight. I just want to know what killed my beloved dog. He was such a sweet animal, and never hurt anyone or anything.

    Bookmark   January 1, 2011 at 11:50PM
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I just wanted to add my own sighting to this thread. My family owns a couple of acres of property in the Shawangunk mountains. Our property borders Minnewaska State Park; the former Awosting Preserve parcel that was the subject of the Save The Ridge campaign. I have been hiking, hunting, snow-shoeing in this area for about 30 years. 3 years ago I was bow-hunting in October, not very far behind our property. I was still-hunting, which means I would take 3-4 quiet and slow steps and then stop for a few minutes. I was walking this way for about half an hour. There were still leaves on the underbrush, which makes for good cover for animals. I had stopped for a minute, and was about to take my next series of steps. As soon as I lifted my foot to take the next step I saw a cat-like animal dart from underneath some heavy brush in front of me, moving quickly away from me with very smooth motion and agility. I thought at first I was seeing someone's house cat up in the woods. The head was that of a cat, but larger. The tail was very long, as long as the body. The legs seemed too short for the long-body, and overall the animal was too large to be a domestic cat. It was not a huge animal, but definitely too large to be a domestic cat. I asked my step-father about it, and he said it was probably a Fischer. I accepted that explanation, as the thought of it being a mountain lion never crossed my mind. However, after I looked at a picture of a Fischer I knew that was not what I had seen. It was definitely a mountain lion. I got a good look at it - about 20 yards away - for a good amount of time - about 2-3 full seconds - right in front of me. I was talking about the sighting with my step-father out at dinner one night at a local restaurant and the waitress joined the conversation to say that she too had seen a mountain lion in the area. So, if I had not seen it with my own eyes I might be skeptical, but there is (or was) at least 1 mountain lion in the Shawangunk Mountains.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2011 at 10:59AM
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bernd ny zone5

Over the last years a friend of mine and I enjoyed hiking inside Minnewaska NY state park to the cliff overlooking the wider Hudson valley. But one summer we decided to cross the road from the park parking lot, down into the small valley, over the creek, up the hill and hiked the trail there West. Over part of that trail we saw that something had dragged possibly a deer for a while on that trail leaving hair on rocks. That was in summer, in a NY state park and probably not a hunter bringing a deer to his car.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2011 at 4:02PM
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I know they exist here in NY. If they didn't why according to DEC and NYS Law you can not kill 1 if seen or you will go to jail and face fines..Just like the Moose they were gone as we were told but growing up and going out to the Catskills we use to see them all the time drinking from a stream in the back of the house.....

    Bookmark   January 17, 2011 at 7:41PM
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I just posted this message in another thread:

We are new residents in the Catskills, living on the southern foothills of Mombaccus and High Point - Tabasco, NY to be exact. We've been here not even 5 months and marvel at the bountiful wildlife. Some sightings are unbelievable.
Late last fall we were both shocked to see a large light brown feline of massive proportion walk past our house (within 20 yards in our backyard). There was no question this thing was not a regular house cat and far from domesticated. We did not have time to grab a camera.

Today, March 2nd, 2011 just before dusk we just sighted a large jet black feline, again massive (within 25 yards, same location as last). About 6 feet in length without the tail, which was enormous on its own and very bulky at the end. Again, no time for a camera.

Both cats had the same qualities: sleek movers, slick coats, concave arch in their back, huge shoulder blades sticking up, long tail barely grazing the ground.

Both cats presented us a profile view and walked away diagonally. We never see faces. Both sightings lasted about 20 seconds.

I'll be going out tomorrow morning to try and find tracks in the frozen snow.

If you live in this area, you have likely seen Black Bear, Bobcat, Coyote, Fox, Bald Eagle, Pileated Woodpecker, etc - I know I have. If you have sighted a large feline in our area, please chime in!

For reference, last 30 seconds of this video depict what we just saw 2 hours ago.

Whether here naturally or escaped from a zoo, I cannot speculate. But this does substantiate previous claims of sightings, at least in my humble opinion.


    Bookmark   March 2, 2011 at 9:10PM
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I live in Ellenburg NY and I have seen 2 Mountain Lions since 1988. The cat my uncle and I saw was on the Lafrancis Road in the town of Clinton in 1988. The second cat was on the Bradley Pond Road in the feild behind my farm. My wife and daughter also saw the tracks and where the tail hit in the snow as it walked along. I know what I saw and have had people with me when I saw them. They are a beautiful creatures and I am glad thatI have been able to see them. I also saw a Canadian Lynx in the 90's. The DEC should be ashamed of themselves for lying to the people who pay them!!!!!

    Bookmark   March 8, 2011 at 9:49PM
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The size of those sterling silver chains together using the pendants ranges from 18" to 34". decrease chain and fortunate bamboo, nowadays, are getting made too by well-known diamond jewelry makers. These diamond jewelry things are exceptional items, which make an exceptional offer with when gifted to 'Lady Love'. The options are several and people thomas sabo verkaufat the moment are unique being spoilt by choices. The types consist of fortunate corner thomas sabo watches charm, fortunate frog, elegance key, the canine tags thomas sabo schweden and several others. the most effective aspect about these is the real truth that thomas sabo rings these items of diamond jewelry are not only breathtaking to hold a thomas sabo outlet seem at and often be donned in any occasion, they may also be really affordable.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2011 at 11:16PM
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First I would like to repeat again there never was in the history of the earth BLACK PANTHERS. Western movies have made us believe they exist in there films but they never have What we call black panthers are Jaguars .They are a south/central American cat not cold upstate NY.The black phase is rarely found in the wild . Yes we can make them for zoos messing with the gene pool. Next Leopards are the only cat in the world that can drag or carry it kill up a tree. We don't live in Africa so the leopard is also out. Look these facts up . GWJOEL I hunted on the state land at the end of Tracy Creek rd next to the Pa boarder. I haven't hunted there in years but have walked around there in the last few years. I couldn't find a deer track. Nothing would live there because of the illegal destruction of the land from four wheelers tearing the land apart. The 18 inch ruts . Sides of the hill tore to the bed rock tells me it's a little to noisy for a cougar.Route13 Rt 13 has grown up over the years . There's a lot of houses along it now and a lot of eyes.For others to of not seen a cougar would surprise. It would of been on the news being blown out of proportion like when bears are spotted around here.There is a bear living around West Corners.I've hunted and hiked all over the Try Cities area Catskills and the Adirondacks through every season and have yet to see any sign of cougars and believe me I look. Once I did find large cat tracks in the Adirondacks in the snow. They were old and at the time when they released lynx there. I know that tracks in snow melt out and can be much larger then the animal that made them. I've have seen the paws and tracks of 400 lbs black bears they are the size of my hand.I have also seen black bear tracks in the snow the size of dinner plates because they have melted out. Some one on here said they saw a bob cat / cougar ? A bob cat looks nothing like a cougar and no where near the size. I have spent weeks in the Adirondacks 20 miles from the nearest building and have yet to see a bob cat or tracks. The only bob cat I've seen was crossing rt17 in Hancock . Tioga county and Tompkins county and by now others have feral hogs. They are black and large.This could be what some are seeing. Like I've stated before many people I work with have told me they have pictures or video of cougars from Elmira area back to the tri Cities. I've been told about peoples uncles neighbor third wife on there co workers sister side finding cows in trees and I've asked to see these pictures and video all the sudden they can't show me.I'm am in no way saying there aren't cougars in NY. But no one seems to want to come up with the proof they claim to have.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2011 at 4:37PM
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In response to gruvfunk, I think you saw what is known as a Fisher. They can have dark fur, almost black and are a very large type of animal from the weasel family.

I have read this forum numerous times because I thought I saw a mountain lion in Rockland County NY, at the very Southern most part of Harriman state park, off on the other side of the fence from interstate 87. I no longer believe that I did see a mountain lion. Living in Westchester just 8 miles from the I have seen numerous foxes and coyotes.

Last year (2010) on route 17 driving south I almost hit a black bear crossing the highway near Hancock, NY.

Anyways what finally brought me to post was the fact that there recently was a Mountain Lion in NY. As many of the other who have posted against Mt. Lions being here many of the reasons you gave of why mountain lions are not in the state were true. First off there was multiple sightings of this animal in the same area on the same day. It became a huge news story down here. Wildlife experts were able to find tracks and scat from this lion. Lastly, very sadly as many have said would happen, this mountain lion was killed by a car. If you check out this link,0,2357918.story

or just google mountain lion, greenwich ct you can find multiple stories. They believe this lion was released or escaped from its owner/handler. I would not be surprised if a rich person in CT owned a mountain lion illegally.

Hope this helps!

    Bookmark   June 11, 2011 at 11:54PM
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Living in Tuxedo NY for most of my life I have seen thousands of deer over the years, the occasional bear,coyotes red fox, grey fox and two bobcats. Five years ago I was snowplowing during heavy snow at 4 AM in Sterling Forest. A mountain lion crossed in my headlights at twenty five feet. Initially I thought it was a small deer as the color appeared the same. The animal I estimate at around eighty pounds was bounding through the deep snow at ten foot leaps. I clearly saw its long tail. It was a large cat! I exited the vehicle to see the tracks however the large single depressions were filled by the collapsing fluffy snow. Three years back while on a deer hunting trip in northern Maine my guide also registered to track bobcat with hounds told me that on one occasion his dogs had treed a cougar, the animal was left unharmed as it was not legal game. Skeptics even now after the CT roadkill confirmation acclaim it to an escaped captive animal. This may be the case, however I believe there to be a small breeding population in the northeast for years now.

    Bookmark   June 12, 2011 at 9:22AM
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Here is some food for thought/proof, a mountain lion was confirmed to be in Greenwich CT last week. Then one was hit by a car in Milford. They say it was likely the same one, likely one that someone released or had escaped...but there were 2 more sightings in Greenwich Sunday morning.

    Bookmark   June 12, 2011 at 11:53PM
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@Craig76, actually you are incorrect. There are black panthers, because the term panther does not refer to one cat. Panthers are a genus of cats that include tigers, lions, jaguars, and leopards. There are both black leopards and black jaguars, so technically there are black panthers.


    Bookmark   June 25, 2011 at 8:08PM
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I just want to say that I SAW a Black Panther today!! That's why I did the search. I told the Forest Ranger and he said others have sited them too, but the DEC officially says None in NY. I first thought it was a black bear, until it turned around and ran in the woods. It was definately a black mountain lion, with the long tail. It was bigger than a German Shepard too. So to say they don't exist is BULL. This was in Jersey Hill State Forest, near Birdsall, NY (Allegany County)!

    Bookmark   July 24, 2011 at 12:14AM
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bhrost(zone 5 NY)

The other day I saw an article in Reuters about a wild Mt Lion killed in Connecticut, the first in about 100 years. Genetic tests proved it to be a wild animal from South Dakota. At some point it crossed the state of New York, where some of you may have seen it. It is a rare occurence no doubt, but if one animal did this it is likely that others have migrated further than some might have thought possible.

Consider the fact that these creatures have spread over two continents under what were probably fairly adverse conditions. There are still corridors they can move along, although as this article illustrates (the lion was killed on the highway) our system of highways is probably the most dangerous territory for them to cross. Interesting to think that a Mt Lion can be prowling nearby and you wouldn't even know it!

    Bookmark   July 27, 2011 at 9:22PM
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I just signed up to say i believe i may have seen a mountain lion in my woods!!!! I was on my way to go on there not thinking twice about running into aomwthing like that and to my surprise i see some kind of fat cat just walking through there and a bunch of birds screaming at it. Kind of sucks though cause now i feel a lot more uneasy about going into the woods myself. I wish i had some sort of mountain lion trap or somethng so i wouldnt have to worry about it. Its also a problem that they sneak up on their pray so it seems like theres no easy way to watch out for them. Oh well. Maybe a warning ahot once i get a shotgun might be able to scare a mountain lion away if its looking for something to eat. This was seen in Downstate New York. Peace.

    Bookmark   July 29, 2011 at 12:15AM
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Craig76, I have been driving on Route 13 daily for many years now and can practically name every bump in the road. There are numerous houses along the road, but they are fairly spread out and all of the properties are surrounded by trees, bushes and hills. The creek runs parallel to the road for the entire length and there are no side roads connecting to Route 13 anywhere except for the very north end. Cats are elusive creatures and very stealthy as well. Even with the homes that are there the surroundings provide enough cover for any animal to move about virtually unseen. Oh, and I may have failed to mention that one resident on the road did report to me having seen a very large cat with a long tail near the creek behind their house. Twice. I'm sure that is still not proof enough for you, but I know what I saw.

    Bookmark   July 29, 2011 at 10:18AM
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Was speaking about hunting to a nice guy in Lowes down in Utica last week. He went on to tell me his neighbor in north Herkimer County had shot a large cat that was attacking a calf in his herd up at the margin of woods and field. Turned out it was a cougar. He reported it to the DEC and ended up in a heap of trouble for shooting what turned out to be a tagged animal. Officially, of course, it never happened as there have been no cougars for nearly a century. His issue was that it didn't matter what it was, tagged or not, it had attacked his herd. Can't verify it, of course, so take it for what it's worth. Certainly an interesting tale.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2011 at 10:15AM
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I know this is an old thread, but just thought I would add to it...

    Bookmark   September 11, 2011 at 3:54PM
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LBrown839- Not to say that it could never be a black panther... most sightings of "black panthers" have ended up being fisher (also called fisher "cats") being mistakenly taken for black mountain lions....

    Bookmark   September 11, 2011 at 6:48PM
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bernd ny zone5

bkpr, how can anyone ever believe that "most sightings of "black panthers" have ended up being fisher (also called fisher "cats") being mistakenly taken for black mountain lions...." Fisher weighs 10 lbs, the other 100-200 lbs. Shape is very different.

Check the Wikipedia, which says that fisher cats are weasels, "Males are 90 to 120 centimetres (35-47 in) in length and weigh 3.5 to 5 kilograms (8-11 lb). Females measure 75 to 95 centimetres (30-37 in) and weigh 2 to 2.5 kilograms (4-6 lb)." Look at the pictures of fisher, their shape looks so very different to cougar.

And here is the Wikipedia about mountain lions : "They are the fourth largest cats[21][22] and adults stand about 60 to 80 centimeters (2.0 to 2.6 ft) tall at the shoulders.[23] The length of adult males is around 2.4 meters (8 ft) long nose to tail, with overall ranges between 1.5 and 2.75 m (5 and 9 ft) nose to tail suggested for the species in general.[24][25] Of this length, 63-96 cm (25-38 in) is comprised by the tail.[26] Males typically weigh 53 to 100 kilograms (115 to 220 pounds), averaging 62 kg (137 lb). Females typically weigh between 29 and 64 kg (64 and 141 lb), averaging 42 kg (93 lb)."

I bet there is also a big difference how a fisher scampers around and a mountain lion strides.

    Bookmark   September 13, 2011 at 6:14PM
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Just saw a big cat. In Brooktondale, south of Ithaca NY. It was moving southward along an old railroad bed. Not sure what kind, probably bobcat, though no pictures I've seen really match what I saw. It crossed the road in front of our pickup 3:30 pm in broad daylight. About the same size as an eastern coyote. Very muscular with sort of snub ears, not pointed. Got it on the cellphone camera, but too far away. Just a pixelated blob.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2011 at 4:47PM
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I know this is a very old thread yet I feel that I need to respond to those who don't believe that there is a possibility that mountain lions could be in this area. 1) Mountain lions are extremely reclusive, and considering that the Adirondack State Park is 6 million acres, they could be here. 2) Mountain lions bury their scat so of course you would not find that as proof of their being here 3) Even in states with a documented presence, there has been reproduction yet very few young that survive to adulthood. 4) Considering the vast territory that makes up the Adirondack State Park, finding a carcass of a mountain lion is highly improbable, after so many months of being exposed to the elements and carrions, the remains would literally go back to earth. I do believe that these animals are here, although if there is a breeding population, it is very small and the young may not survive the elements/other predatory animals. My boyfriend is an avid hunter and has been for 15 years. He saw tracks in his own backyard (which is really more wilderness than suburban) that he could not identify to be any other animal besides a mountain lion. By the time I got out to his house with my camera, the tracks had melted due to premature warm weather. In speaking with the farmer across the road, it was discovered that a small deer was found on that property but was covered with brush (as occurs with mountain lion kills) I know my boyfriend has been in the woods all his life and he now hunts differently because of what he saw....he's more cautious, especially when predator calling/hunting. I'm not saying with 100% certainty that they are here, but there really is no reason why they wouldn't be. Anything is possible.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2011 at 11:31PM
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Since this thread is about mountain lions in NY I will repeat this post here---November 2011 I saw a large dead red cat on left shoulder of Southbound I-81 just after the Whitney pt exit. The face was rounded-a cross between a raccoon kind of face and a domestic cat.-sweet/round face very long rope like (thickish) tail w.straight fur-curved around towards the front- height of a St. Barnard but thin build like a Dane. The legs were long. The color was solid orange red. I was traveling at 65mph and by the time I had processed what I saw it was too late to easily pull over. I was very surprised. I posted a description of what I had seen on Topix in the hope someone else had seen it and could let me know what it was. All I got was a few snide comments. Then I found this:
"05-05-2011, 06:48 PM #1
crokit Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 158
Mountain lion sighting
First, let me state that I have all my faculties, excellent eye sight, and am not given to exaggerations.
Today, while traveling south on Interstate 81, between Syracuse and Binghamton, I saw a Mountain Lion / Cougar/Panther, pick your noun.!! 100% positive, absolutely no doubt. There is ZERO chance that it was anything else. The only other thing it could have possibly been ( other than a live mountain lion/cougar/panther ) is a full body mount of a mountain lion/cougar/panther and someone pulling a prank. It was less than 100yds off the West side of the road, sitting on top of a section of rock/cliff that the highway had been cut through. It was sitting on it's haunches, leaning forward, ears forward, looking down onto/across the highway. It was about 30-40 feet above the highway. Just before the " Castle creek 1 mile " highway sign.
When I screamed " holy F%^K, a mountain lion, scaring the S#$T out my buddy who was driving almost lost control at 75 mph.
An absolutely beautiful animal, well muscled, excellent specimen. Up until now, when ever I've seen reports of sightings, I've taken them with a grain of salt. No more!
Anyone know of any other recent reported sightings in that area?
Wldnerness: Can you put me in touch with any of the state Dec/Rangers/etc from that area?"
And my post on Topix was as follows:
East Syracuse, NY
1 huge red fox, moutain lion or lynx on I-81 (S) near Castle Creek
Nov 9, 2011
Did any see a dead huge cat like animal on the southbound side of I-81 about a mile closer to Syracuse then the exit for Castle Creek. It was on the left lying an its side, obviously dead and huge. If you did see it, or heard someone else talking about it, what was it? It looked like it had a body like a mountain lion, a long tail with long fur-not bushy and a face that was rounder like a lynx.Its color was pretty uniformly red-not mixed or strips or anything like that. I was moving too fast and, once I had processed what I saw, I had gone too far to see it. Apparently someone picked it up, probably for its fur, because it was gone soon thereafter. I saw it at around 10:40am Tuesday morning. If you did not see it but are familiar with the wild life around there, any ideas? Any information would be appreciated.
Hunters and Wild life experts,(to those needing to be sarcastic, save it), what do you think? These two sightings are at identical places. I do not believe that they are both mirages. Also, if the one I saw was young--it would not have been as visible to a driver on I-81 6 months earlier. The one I saw was not so big that it would have been very visible to drivers if it were on the top of a hill. That means that the one I saw could have been the adolescent offspring of the one seen by the earlier poster. If so, maybe there is a den nearby. I know exactly where I saw the dead animal so a wildlife person or ranger could easily investigate. If the other poster saw the parent in May and I saw a dead adolescent one in November I bet that there is one that has set up a residence in the area.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2012 at 6:45AM
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bernd ny zone5

In today's MSNBC web site is an article about people in Connecticut seeing cougars, but officials do not care.
Then I always read that there is no local breeding population, and occasionally encountered cougars would be released pets or are wandering in from somewhere else. I read that we have 1000 mountain lion pets in the east. For me a hungry escaped pet, wanderer or locally bred cougar are equally of concern when I hike in the woods, or garden outside.

    Bookmark   January 21, 2012 at 4:51PM
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This thread definitely has many great discussions going on but one has to realize how large Northern NY is. The Adirondack State Park as mentioned above by oneshot "... is larger then the more famous Yellowstone, Grand Canyon and Yosemite National Parks combined?" The park is well over 6 million acres and much of that is distanced from anywhere people normally venture. A mountain lion also has a range upwards of 300 miles. Given both of these and if you know anything about the winters in this area, it tends to snow quite often and is windy through another rather large portion of the winter. I've lived in the northern region of the AKD's for more than 20 years and am a very, very active outdoorsman. It's not uncommon to see deertracks in the snow anywhere around where I live but it is uncommon to see them there for more than a week. They tracks melt off, they fill in with other snow, they get covered over. I'm just saying that when something does leave a track in the snow, if somebody doesn't come across it in that time, the tracks are gone.

After having seen a cougar myself in the woods while out hunting, I asked some wildlife professors from a nearby forestry school and the responses I received were it could have been a fox, the tail was long and thick rather than bushy; maybe it was a house cat, never saw a houscat that could have easily gone 60+lbs; maybe I just didn't know what I saw, well as I've said, I've spent more than 20 years in the woods here and the only animal I have yet to see that lives here is the Moose though I've seen many signs. The basic consclusion was that it was a released animal because I was able to get so close to it or even within sight. I think this was just possible because I was out hunting on the top of a ridge and the wind was blowing my way so it would have been awful hard for my scent to be down at the bottom and off to the side of that ravine.

Later I asked some local DEC officers about the issue, his response was that the DEC does not at all deny that cougars are in the area but that there is no reproductive population. They are most likely coming down from ME and southern portions of Canada. As to find hard proof that they are there, there 1400 people in the town I live in, we are basically in the middle of nowhere as it's 25+miles to the nearest populated center. There are very very few sightings from any of these people, less than half a dozen over the last 20 years so I would say although rare, they are around.

Good luck with your venture

    Bookmark   February 7, 2012 at 9:24AM
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