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Let me apologize in advance if I'm off base here. You said something about states not acknowledgeing the existence of big cat's. I don't understand why they wouldn't if they were there and asked why they don't. You didn't answer the question.

Are you a hunter or animal rights activeist or a researcher just very intrested? I ask because we have a group of avtiveist's here in Oregon that want's to put a end to all Cougar hunting. I looked at a list of all your post's and with one exception, moose population, every post you've made is about cougar's and none mention hunting.

I have no problem if your working a cause, nothing really wrong with that. But if that is it, I'd like to know. IF you are one of those trying to stop cougar hunting, there's nothing we could say to change your mind. But if research is it, probally some could help you.

So, the big question is, why are you researching an animal that is not on any threatened or endangered list and are you researching any other animal's? Again, if I'm off base I apologize.

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I cannot comment on this thread as I have absolutely no informed opinion to give, but here's what happened in northern Nova Scotia, Canada a few years back.
A couple of young fellas took a two litre Coke bottle and using the bottom of the bottle, gingerly placed a couple of imprints on the side of the muddy road and then reported seeing a big,beige cat with a long tail on the road THE EASTERN COUGAR ! Only after the boys told their buddies and the word spread, was the truth ascertained. Apparently, the bottom of a Coke bottle makes an impression so similiar to the eastern cougar(or partial print, I don'tknow) that the experts were relying on it to be true.
By the way, the last "documented sighting" in Nova Scotia was in 1956

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puma researcher & Nova Scotia sightings

I'm going to reply to the last 2 messages in this one reply.

First off, I'm a 41 year long veteran researcher of big cats in the east, specifically in the mid-atlantic states of Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia & Pennsylvania.
In those 41 years, considerable evidence has been found & documented by private & independent wildlife biologists, anthropologists & ecologists. Only skeptical & irresponsible american establishment scientists refused to acknowledge all the evidence that has been presented over the last 25 years. Why do scientists refuse to acknowledge the evidence, several reasons, with the primary one being "state agencies may be responsible for releasing the big cats into the wilderness areas to control the vast deer herds", as indicated by dozens of retired field conservation officers.
I am also NOT a hunter, but have NO problems with hunters especially if they kill deer or other animals for food, not just trophies or for bragging about their capabilities in hunting..
We also support giving weapons to the 4 legged animals, so they could shoot back at their 2-legged predators and make it an even match.....
I have a young doe that hangs in the woods to rear of my West Virginia home....and I fully protect her from 2 legged predators. Although a totally wild deer, we have made an agreement & regularly discuss life as a deer and as a person. I supply her with plenty of apples & corn, so we have a mutual agreement that she is safe as long as she hangs out on my property.
My native american uncle taught me many moons ago, how to talk with animals.....so you will not fear them.

As for message #2.....in last 6 months, scat found in northern Nova Scotia has been positively identified thru DNA. The DNA backed up with numerous areawide reports dating back into the 1960s. With 2 confirming sources, Canadian Wildlife Officials have now acknowledged the related incidents.

John A. Lutz, Director
Eastern Puma Research Network

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Well John, I don't think I have a problem with that. But I'd still like to know why this research? Is it you believe that turning them loose to control the deer herd's was wrong? Think I would agree with you there. The cougar's are beautiful animals and tho I never hunted them an have no plans to, they with the wolf are really true killing machines. To repopulate them in close proxcimity to civilization is a dis-service to the animals, not to mention the humans they may attack. I'm sure you've read about the attacks that have happened in California. I've heard of a few in Washington and they are supposeably causing trouble here in Ore.

I know of one rancher, lives about 1/2 mi from here that dispatched two under his house. It is unfortunate that preditor's like the cougar and wolf can't be tolerated in society but they are truely meat eaters and take their meals where they find them. That's just the way they are. I get very upset with those that want to repopulate animals like that back in civilization, the animals will be shot, even if illegal. May not be right and may not be fair but is the way it is.

If some of the eastern states are doing that to control deer, what happens after the deer are under control? Those cats are much more wary than even the wolf. And even if deer become hard to find, they will eat. If not the farmer's cow's or the neghibors dog; then his kids.

Does your group have or have plans for some type enclosure to keep the cougars safe? That would be a good idea I think. But not a shabby joint. A friend and I stopped in Indiana a couple years ago at a place that had big cats caged. Beautiful animals but pretty shody conditions. I guess that holding them like that would be very expensive. Out here there is an animal impoundment called "animal safari", I think that's what it is. It's in Winston, Ore. A good many animals running free in enclousures that visiters drive thru to see them. It will eventually come to wiping out all the fierce preditor's to keep civilization safe if compound's are not set up for them. Come to think of it there is a wolf impoundment just south of Olympia, Wash.

Tell us your goal's.

Don

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John A Lutz wrote:

As for message #2.....in last 6 months, scat found in northern Nova Scotia has been positively identified thru DNA. The DNA backed up with numerous areawide reports dating back into the 1960s. With 2 confirming sources, Canadian Wildlife Officials have now acknowledged the related incidents(end quote).

Could you provide me with the links to this claim. I just spent an hour on The Nova Scotia Natural Resources website, found nothing at all, Canadian Wildlife Service, nothing. I'm live in Pictou County, Nova Scotia and that is the centre of Northern Nova Scotia, as good as it gets ! . Nothing.
I hope they are not relying on information from our beloved " Collie The Confessor", 672 Confessions, NO Convictions.

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east vs west cougars

We are against private ownership of the big cats except if they are well cared for and in similar natural habitat enclosures with large areas for movement.

We know of 4 private owners in the east, each having one or 2 pumas.

All are well cared for, in very large habitat simulated enclosures & who have access to owner's homes. In fact 4 weeks ago, we went over to visit one cat and actually got to play, rub and let the cat eat a cake from our hands.

We do NOT have any large cats ourselves, as we do not have the space for its proper upkeep.

Deer herds in east vary in size. Some states have overabundent to the extent, some states are allowing for special hunts to reduce populations. In those satates, have been an increasing in number of big cat sightings.

A few states lack large deer herds & number of big cats reports are down.

In Georgia, increasing numbers of the sub-species Puma concolor coyri have expended from a few in the Ga/Fla swamp to move west and NW into adjoining states. Georgia has a mixing bowl of various sub-species that include native eastern & releases from other sub-species.

We continue to monitor the large cats thru cluster sightings (repeated reports over multiple decades), similar to what the USF&WS is doing in several western states....thru GPS tracking of cats with collars..

Connecticut wildlife officials seem to be monitoring 2 cougars, but its not known if state released them or probably a university in an experiment to determine if the cats could, I repeat could, became part of the state's fauna once again. A radio-collared cougar was seen & filmed, along with 2 green-uniformed men in a white state van with monitering equiptment in an area of multiple reports.

John A. Lutz

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John,

Has your organization got any photo's af eastern cougars? Would be nice to see a few posted here. Also, is their main diet back there deer? I would think that with the population of deer back there, there would be a lot of cats. Do you have any estimates of the size of the populations? I realize that getting information like that could be a bit tricky as they are even harder to spot then bears. I have never used them, but, have you guy's tried "trail cams" to photograph them?

I think that what they were origionally called in the east was "catamounts" wasn't it? How about down in Florida. I've heard over the years that some exist in the Everglades.

By the way, do you have that information Hammer asked for? Trying very hard to buy this.

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Cameras

About a dozen trail cams are in use, but not a major source for obtaining evidence....tooo limited in scope & pumas do not use the same route.

We use good ole fashion leg work in field studies, general sighting reports by area residents, trappers, hunters, police officiers and 100s of retired conservation officers.

Am still looking for data to back up Nova Scotia events.....of DNA scat reports.

We get about 100 reports & inquiries a day...from across North & South America & Australia.....

Pictures can be found on our website: http://www.easternpumaresearch.com
They are changed as time permits by our web-master.....

John A. Lutz.

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John,

Looked at the lion photo's on your site. The one of the cub appears to have been taken in a studio, catch light's in the eye's.

Have you been to the "trackincats" site? I just went there and I think they would like to rid their area of cougars. If you look at the photo's of "Buddy" it's understandable. That is not a coyote kill. I have seen a few coyote's on kills and every time the first thing they went for was the gut cavity. Maybe a wolf kill? I really don't know, but this is one reason why the large meat eater's won't make it in civilization. Good bad or indifferent, they eat meat and are not real choosy where they get it.

I think it would be nice it a number of these animals could be kept in enclousure such as I spoke of earlier. I would hate to see them gone but them I'd hate to see a kid get eaten by one too. And they have attacked people out here. I've been thinking, the name of that place in Winston is "Wildlife Animal Safari". I've been there once, great place. At the Winston site, the animals are kept in very large fenced in enclousures and the visitors drive around inside with them. Many graging animals but also Alaskan Brown Bears, Cheetah's, and African lions to name a few. If your ever out this way, give me some warning and I'd be glad to take you there.

Don

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wild cougars

The picture of the cub was filmed under supervision and not in the wild. It is on the website as a reference...
We continue to prove thru evidence collection backed by DNA of wild cougars, mountain lions are roaming across North America and should not be kept in small enclosures, but have full rein in the more isolated areas of eastern North America.
West Virginia has a fairly large size of native cougars, so why release alien stock when native are already in place.
We don't have to go west to find cougars...they are widespread in most eastern states and are breeding in at least 17 areas.