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33

I actually had a site bookmarked for this very reason that provided some good, sound advice. I've always heard that a cougar (mountain lion) generally doesn't let you see it unless its considering attacking. 100 yards away or more that is unattentive to you Avoid rapid movements, running, loud, excited talk. Stay in groups; keep children with ...


30

If one looks at the list on Wikipedia of fatal attacks, one will notice that fatal cougar attacks are pretty rare. At least 20 people in North America were killed by cougars between 1890 and 2011, including six in California. Children are particularly vulnerable. The majority of the child victims listed here were not accompanied by adults. So just ...


16

Given that the active ingredient is capsaicin which is used in self-defence sprays for all types of purposes, bear spray should be effective on anything with tear ducts, soft tissue, sinuses, eyeballs, etc, (and will totally dominate a bean burrito**). The discriminating difference between "bear spray" vs "self-defense" spray, vs. law enforcement "occupy-...


15

I think these signs in California and elsewhere describe it quite simply:


14

Since 2000 there are only 3 recorded death by cougar in North America and all of those were day time. wiki Cougar attacks are up but still rare on the west coast. Up in CA as partly because cougar hunting is not allowed and the numbers are climbing. In OR and WA dogs cannot be used to hunt cougar. According to the link below since 1990 10 non-fatal ...


13

Cougars principally hunt at dawn and dusk. If you're small, don't be alone at those times of day. Regular sized adults are generally too big for a cougar to consider as prey. Avoid animal carcasses. Assume there is a carcass if there are lots of scavenger birds somewhere. Of course, take standard precautions with food: Keep food odors off your sleeping ...


11

I was backpacking with my nine-year-old daughter two years ago in Oregon near Mt. Hood. I awoke (in our tent) to the noise of a cougar walking around outside. I assumed it was a black bear and didn't learn otherwise until we found its tracks the next morning. Anyway, I made noise by running my fingers over the nylon tent fabric. It was pretty loud, and ...


9

The Arizona Game and Fish Department shows a mountain lion hunting season from August through May. The International Union for Conservation of Nature gives the puma conservation status as Least Concern.


7

Fortunately, I cannot give you an answer based on first-hand experience or, unfortunately, even close personal observation. The two sources, (1) Balanced Ecology, Inc and (2) Defenders of Wildlife suggest that cougars do not play with their prey, at least not the larger of their prey. Cougars eat a variety of animals from rabbits to deer. Defenders of ...


7

Chemically, if you can use it, I see no reason why it wouldn't work on any similar animals - though practically it may not be as effective. In terms of cougars for instance, this seems to imply it'll work if you can get it out and use it in time, but because of their nature the chances of you being able to carry out the task successfully are dramatically ...


7

This video is quite a good instruction. But beware! This strategy might not be valid for other beasts of prey, such as lions. In a video which is now deleted, a man is instructed to be quiet and stay low not to agitate the beast. Also, the man in this video is staying low (in fact, he's almost lying) and threatening the lion with toilet paper (!) if ...


7

I can think of many reasons why solo-backpacking wouldn't be advisable, but cougars isn't one of them. I'm not saying cougar attacks don't happen, last summer there was a incident in Waterton National Park close to home here, a cougar was menacing hikers along a popular trail, and even attacked a teenage girl that was part of a group. Cougar attacks are ...


6

The precautions are exaggerated. These animals are extremely reclusive. Adult humans are outside their prey schema and will be avoided except in extremely unusual circumstances. From Wikipedia: Fatal cougar attacks are extremely rare and occur much less frequently than fatal dog attacks, fatal snake bites, fatal lightning strikes, or fatal bee stings. ...


5

For assistance in identifying them, I've added some photos that I took. Here is a picture I took recently of a mountain lion track on a log that crossed a stream. The knife is 4.2" long, so the paws are about 4.2" wide, which is typical of an adult cougar. The larger paw was planted first followed by the smaller paw imprinted over it. Notice no claw ...


5

Cougars are as one would expect not afraid of any animal, being on the top of the food chain. Their one exception would be bears. Not even hunting or other disposal means will deter cougars from attacking people. Killing cougars does nothing to prevent future cougar attacks or make people and livestock safer; however, employing common sense precautions ...


5

I often go solo backpacking in mountain lion country. I've had an encounter with one before. It was night and it was lurking around about 50 feet from my campsite. I noticed it after turning on my headlamp and looking around. It must have been curious. I scared it off by growling and yelling at it. Earlier that evening I think I scared it, as I ...


4

The other answers sum it up great for the most part: it will work on other mammals if you have a chance to use it. It's pretty strong stuff, and while I could imagine something like a bull elephant in musth shrugging it off, in general it will work. It will not work on birds though, as many a mailman using pepper spray against defensive geese and turkeys ...


4

There does not seem to be much information over the net on the distance one can hear a mountain lion, but I did find this little tidbit: The frightening puma scream is the long range call. It has been described as like a high pitched and short roar of one of the big cats. Then there is the shrill whistle like call. This call has been used by a tame ...


4

This source, List of fatal cougar attacks in North America suggests that you are probably safest from a cougar while sleeping. Of the seven adults killed by cougars in North America from 1990 through mid-2008, five were jogging, hiking, biking or skiing. One was killed defending her six year old son on a horseback trip. The body of the seventh was found ...


4

I honestly do not know for which individual species this method has been used, and in particular whether it has been used for Puma concolor, but a general method that is frequently used for population estimates is "mark and recapture" In this technique, you enter an area, trap as many of the target species as you can, and mark them, such as with a collar or ...


3

The easiest time to find them is just after a fresh snowfall. Optimum conditions are enough snow for the tracks to be clearly visible without preventing one from driving back roads. The way people and especially hunters will find tracks is to drive the back roads in the morning just after a fresh snow looking for tracks crossing the road where they are most ...


3

Animals are the least of your concerns at that altitude. I spend a lot of time at that elevation just on the other side of the border from Montana in Canada. Your elevation is less of a factor for animal encounters than what the weather is. Go hiking in the heat of the day and you will not see another living thing out on those rocks, because every critter ...


2

Mountain lion hunting is legal in the western parts of the United States, with the exception of California. Regarding licenses and quotas, there are three types, Tags, with limited numbers availiable. Over the counter licenses with quotas. Unprotected, no license necessary. The taking of large males is prioritized by both hunters and the wildlife ...


2

There are two things we have to keep in mind with this subject. If the cougar populations are in decline anywhere, this would seem to mean that cougar attacks would naturally also be in decline. But if sport hunting is in fact contributing to mountain lion population declines but still not increasing public safety or reducing attacks on livestock, then other ...


2

In 40 years of hiking in the wilderness, I have never seen a cougar/panther. but I have smelled bears close by. Bears are more common and can be more aggressive. Never have any food with you that can attract them. Also spray yourself all over with Deet, it will keep the bugs and animals away. Yes really! Carry Mace spray. Also, consider carrying a loud radio ...


2

There are two things that can help one estimate the size, Size of the individual tracks themselves. The stride length (distance between tracks on the same size) The size of the tracks will stay the same no matter how an animal is moving, however, when an animal runs, the stride length will increase so it's not as good an indicator. As far as determining ...


2

Would they eat wild horses? Yes, and they do. Would they control their populations? No, not really. The fact that there were 30 - 60 million bison roaming North America before westerners came to the continent should be an indicator of how well predators here are of "controlling" populations. Granted, wolves and bears probably preyed more on bison than ...


2

I doubt that there is anything about your body chemistry that is a cougar attractor. But, if you are a petite person, a lion will see you as easy prey. And, if the stalking occurred at dawn or dusk, know that that is prime hunting time for cougars. A reference that I cannot now find advised people not to hike in cougar country in a group smaller than ...


2

Sorry, don't have any references handy. But from what I've read (including ranger stories), cougar attacks on humans are very rare. And from what was described as stalking, is just plain watching. Either from curiosity, or making sure you aren't a threat. If they were planning an attack, they would be a lot more stealthy. Now, cougar attacks on pets is ...


2

It probably was, as 50 lbs is way beyond the size at which they are weaned. However, mountain lion cubs will stay with the mom for up to 18 months. Female cougars probably begin leading their kittens to kills as early as 7 to 8 weeks. The mother also carries meat to her young from kills until weaning age (2 to 3 months), at which point the cubs weigh in ...


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