The cougar Puma concoloralso known as mountain lion, panther, painter, puma, and catamount, is the largest feline animal in North America. However, the cougar may be coming back to Tennessee. There have been some confirmed sightings in Tennessee. The cougar belongs to the family Felidae cat family which is in the order Carnivora. Adults are large sleek cats with small he.
Their ears are black on the upper side and are small and rounded with no tufts of hair. The muzzle is white on the end and black where it s the head. Cougars have a long heavy cylindrical tail ranging in length from 20 to 30 inches, with the last couple of inches blackish in color.
Claws are retractable and are very seldom part of a track. Cougar fur is generally a solid tan color on the upper parts with white undersides. Slight variations can make the solid brown cat have a reddish, yellowish, or grayish tinge.
No black color phase termed melanistic of a cougar has ever been documented. There is, however, documentation of melanistic jaguars Panthera onca that live in Mexico and south to northern Argentina, as well as melanistic leopards Panthera pardus in Africa. The bobcat is the only other animal belonging to the cat Felidae family that can be found in Tennessee.
Bobcats differ from cougars in their size, coloration, and tail length. They are much smaller than cougars, ranging in weight from 10 to 40 pounds, whereas a cougar starts at 70 pounds. They also have pointed ears with hair tufts, unlike the cougar. The cougar occupies the most extensive range of any New World terrestrial mammal, from the Canadian Yukon to the southern tip of South America. In the United States, cougars inhabit the western region and extend eastward as far as the western edge of the Dakotas, Nebraska, and close to the eastern borders of Colorado and Texas.
A study published in the Journal of Wildlife Management in compiled confirmed locations of cougars collected outside of their established range during The of the study suggest that the cougar is recolonizing the Midwest with a range expansion eastward. It is well documented that cougars travel hundreds of miles in search of new territory. The recent confirmed sightings in Tennessee could be a result of this range expansion and long exploratory treks by transient cougars. This expansion does not equate to population establishment. Population establishment only occurs where reproducing females are documented.
Considering that there are large expanses between Tennessee and the established populations, it will likely be a long time before cougars make their home here.
Hot couple searching hot sex
The Journal of Wildlife Management, — Since September ofthere have been a few confirmed sightings of cougars in Tennessee. When more confirmed sightings occur, they will be added accordingly. Tennessee Confirmed Cougar Sightings Map. TWRA receives many photos and reports of cougars, but until the photos were not confirmable.
What does it take to become an officially confirmed sighting? There are many steps in the confirmation process. There is more examination to be done. Hair, tracks, and scat samples can be analyzed as evidence of a cougar sighting.
left behind such as kill sites and caches, drag marks, and scrapes can also be useful. Cougar tracks are round and are inches long and When photographing suspected cougar tracks it is helpful to place a ruler or object such as a coin to enable size judgment.
Large dog tracks are often mistaken for cougar tracks. Like a dog, the paw has four toes and a pad. Bears have 5 toes and a pad. A detailed explanation of the confirmation process of the f irst confirmed cougar sighting is available here. Because Tennessee law protects all animals for which no hunting season is proclaimed, the cougar is protected in Tennessee.
It is illegal to kill a cougar in Tennessee except in the case of imminent threat of life and injury. TWRA has never, nor has it any plans to stock or otherwise physically encourage the establishment of a cougar population in Tennessee. This subspecies is likely recolonizing and expanding their range in the Midwest and is likely the subspecies that is the subject of Tennessee cougar sightings. The Eastern Cougar, once ranging in all of the U. Because the federal Endangered Species Act does not protect extinct species, the Eastern Cougar subspecies was officially removed from the federal endangered species list this year The Florida Panther, residing on the southern tip of Florida, is the only breeding population of cougar east of the Mississippi River.
With a population estimate of individuals, this subspecies is on the federal endangered species list.
The occasional dispersing male has made his way to into Georgia and parts of Alabama. Cougars are shy, nocturnal, solitary, secretive animals, with large home ranges. Because of their behavioral patterns, the likelihood of encountering a cougar is extremely slim, even in areas with established populations. To show how rare a cougar attack is, compare the of human fatalities resulting from cougar attacks to those resulting from other hazards from animals or nature.
In the years between toin the U. Also considering there have been no confirmed sightings of a cougar between the years and in Tennessee, the chances of a cougar encounter are even smaller. Never run, but instead make yourself threatening by standing tall, waving your arms, throwing objects, and yelling.
If the animal attacks, fight back!
Do not play dead. Report the encounter to local authorities and TWRA as soon as possible.
Cougar attacks on humans in the United States and Canada. Wildlife Society Bulletin.
Go to TN. Print This. Go to Search. Wildlife Mammals Large Mammals Cougars. Cougars, Puma concolor.
Range The cougar occupies the most extensive range of any New World terrestrial mammal, from the Canadian Yukon to the southern tip of South America. Confirmed Sightings Since September ofthere have been a few confirmed sightings of cougars in Tennessee.
The photo must be of a cougar. Many photos turn out to be other animals caught in a position in which they look like a cougar. Often perception in a photo can be distorted, making house cats and bobcats appear cougar like.
Coyotes and large dogs are also often mistaken for cougars. Also, many trail camera photos are taken at night and are too unclear to make out the details to really know what kind of animal is in the photo. The photo must be authentic. It boggles the mind the of cougar hoaxes that are out there. Many times a photo of a cougar from another state is touted as being from Tennessee.
Photographic evidence must be examined to rule out these possibilities.
Often, the physical site that is represented in the photo is examined by TWRA staff members. Cougar Status in Tennessee Because Tennessee law protects all animals for which no hunting season is proclaimed, the cougar is protected in Tennessee.
Cougar Encounters Cougars are shy, nocturnal, solitary, secretive animals, with large home ranges. Pepper spray may also be effective.