Mountain Lions In Maine: Do They Exist?

Rumors are swirling on-line that there are mountain lions in Maine. Residents often share tales of awe-inspiring sightings of majestic animals. There are numerous information articles investigating these experiences. And they seem like growing over time. However are they legitimate? Do pumas reside in Maine?

Be a part of us on our journey to discover the query of whether or not mountain lions reside within the northeastern states. However first, let’s take a fast take a look at what a puma is and the place the animal normally lives.

What’s a Mountain Lion

mountain lion (identical shade as puma) It belongs to the household Felidae (Felidae). He is among the largest predators within the Western Hemisphere. Widespread names fluctuate by area. Nonetheless, it’s possible you’ll know them as cougars, leopards, catamounts, or pumas.

These felines have beige or tan fur, though some have reddish-orange fur. The stomach and thorax are skinny and normally gentle grey or white. It additionally has black accents on the nostril, across the eyes, the tip of the tail, and the ears.

Grownup male mountain lions are bigger than females. The typical weight of the previous is 140 kilos for him, however the most he can attain is 225 kilos. And whereas they common seven ft lengthy, they’ll attain lengths of as much as 9 ft, though the typical feminine weight is simply 80 to 90 kilos.

Spectacular animals favor massive sport. Mountain lions get pleasure from searching animals akin to elk and deer. Nonetheless, in addition they eat smaller prey akin to raccoons, coyotes, and mice. Giant cats additionally goal unprotected livestock and domesticated pets which might be left outdoor.

They’re solitary and elusive animals. Girls preserve kittens till they’ll enterprise out. They’re then paired with males through the mating season. Apart from that, grownup mountain her lions hardly ever overlap territory.

Pumas are very solitary creatures.

© Jeffrey Kuchera/

mountain lion habitat

Large cats have the widest territorial ranges of any mammal within the Americas. Traditionally, they lived wherever between the Yukon and southern Chile. Nonetheless, over the previous 100 years, habitat loss and aggressive searching practices have led to vital inhabitants declines. At present, mountain lions nonetheless reside in most of Central and South America. Nonetheless, solely 15 states in the US have mountain lion breeding populations.

Mountain lions love mountains, forests, deserts and swamps equally. They fortunately roam the ocean floor and climb as much as 10,000 ft. This wonderful animal is extra serious about meals abundance than in its explicit atmosphere.

puma vs mountain lion
Mountain lions love rocks and cliffs the place they’ll conceal from prey.

© Christina Moraes/

Maine’s Mountain Lions and Their Historic Ranges

Jap Cougar (Cougars of the identical shade as pumas)A subspecies of mountain lion that roamed freely all through Maine. They had been traditionally frequent sights. Nonetheless, habitat destruction, inhabitants progress, and searching practices prevented the large cats from surviving. Formally listed as extinct from Maine.

The final identified mountain lion in Maine died in 1932. In accordance with the Maine Division of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIF&W), there are at present no identified breeding mountain lions within the state. The official place on the state and federal degree is that mountain lions discovered within the state are both Florida panthers, have strayed from the western United States, or have escaped captivity.

Nonetheless, residents often report mountain lion sightings. Most are dismissed outright attributable to lack of proof.

The final mountain lion to reside in Maine was killed within the early twentieth century.


Mountain Lion Sightings in Maine

State officers declare there are only a few mountain lion sightings in Maine, however residents aren’t satisfied. Over the previous few a long time, there have been numerous experiences of mountain lion potential. And whereas none have been confirmed, all of them present loads of gas for mountain lion lore.

In 2020, native publication Northwoods Sporting Journal solicited articles about doable encounters with mountain lions. The editor was overwhelmed with over 20 sightings, sorted them, and revealed probably the most dependable.

Essentially the most attention-grabbing story got here from a retired biologist who labored for Fish and Sport in California. . He claims he noticed a lion on Black Mountain about 15 ft away. What makes this story significantly attention-grabbing is that formally Black He Mountain Lion doesn’t exist. Federal wildlife officers say there isn’t a proof of extinct black mountain lions in North America, solely black jaguars.

Nonetheless, there’s one comparatively current sighting. In 1996, laboratory assessments confirmed the presence of cougars in Cape Her Elizabeth.

State and federal officers have steered that western cougars often make their strategy to jap states. However not everyone seems to be satisfied, particularly as our neighbors to the north report elevated cougar exercise.

That has sparked a dispute between eyewitnesses who claimed to have seen the puma and wildlife officers who say there is not a lot credible proof. Considered one of his predominant issues is his different two massive cats. conduct Deliver bobcats and Canadian lynx to Maine. Additionally, in different components of the nation, these two are routinely mistaken for mountain lions. Due to this fact, with out conclusive bodily proof and higher photographic proof, there isn’t a definitive reply as as to whether mountain lions reside in Maine.

puma vs mountain lion
State officers often obtain experiences of mountain lion sightings in Maine.

©SR Maglione/


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