American Cougar - felis concolor - aka Pumas, Catamounts,
Panthers, Mountain Lions
The Cougar (felis concolor) has one of the largest habitats
of any feline species, thus their many names. Although, depending
on were you live, you may be more accustomed to calling them
Panthers, Mountain Lions, Pumas, or even Catamounts. At one
time they were found from the tip of Florida where the are
so named the “Florida Panther”, to California
where they are known as the “Mountain Lion”,
and from the bottom of South America were they are called
the "Puma", and they range all the way up into
Canada. Depending on the range they inhabit, the Cougar may
be called by many names.
Mountain lions are one of the most broadly distributed large
mammals in North America. Mostly solitary, adults come together
only in the breeding season; for the rest of the year they
are extremely territorial. The cats are careful never to have
a population density that will in and of itself deplete the
food supply. They are primarily nocturnal and crepuscular,
but on rare occasions can be observed during the day. These
animals have extremely good night vision (see the Nocturnal
TigerHomes has two resident North American cougars,
Nevada and Rebate which like most Cougars are full of
never ending energy. Cougars are known as the largest
of all the “Small Cats”. Their claim to fame
is that they also hold the vertical and horizontal jumping
record! Cougars have been known to jump 25 feet across
a stream and 18 feet straight up into a tree. They are
nature's true athletes. Another little known fact is
the fact that Cougars have the best breath of any cat!
As mentioned above, Cougars are classified as a “Small
Cat” (Felis). Unlike a White Tiger, which is classified
as a “Big Cat” (Felidae). The major difference
separating the two classifications is the ability to
roar vs. the ability to purr. All of the “Small
Cats” can purr, while all of the “Large Cats” have
the ability to roar. Cougars do actually have a very
unusual beautiful vocalization as well as the loudest
recorded purring ever documented.
Scientific Name: felis concolor
Range: North America through South American from the
Canadian Yukon to the tip of South America. Including
Argentina, Belize, Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, Chile,
Colombia, Ecuador, El Salvador, French Guiana, Guatemala,
Guyana, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Paraguay, Peru,
Suriname, United States, Uruguay, and Venezuela.
Female: 29.5 - 45.5 kg ( 65 -100 lbs)
Male: 45.5 - 68.2 kg (100 -150 lbs)
Female: 1.82-1.97m ( 6'-0" - 6'-6") with tail approximately 1/3 of
Male: 1.97-2.2 m ( 6'-6" - 7'-3") " " " " " "
Diet: Mammals of any size, ground dwelling birds, occasionally reptiles.
Gestation Period: 92-96 Days
Sexual Maturity: 1 1/2 years - 3 years.
Birth Season: March-April
Cubs Per Litter: (Usually 2-4 cubs) Cubs are born blind and weigh .54kg - .90kg
(1.2 - 2 lbs)
Weaning: 6 Months
Cub Maturity: 18 Months - 2 Years
Lifespan: 15-18 Years
Predators: None except Man. In some areas, wolves have been observed preying
on cougar cubs.
Social Structure: Solitary, except during mating season.
Territory Size: Approx. 18 square miles but depends on prey density
Population: Globally less than 50,000
Conservation Status: CITES Appendix I - Eastern
and Central American subspecies (Felis concolor coryi, costaricensis and cougar
) All other subspecies CITES
Appendix II. (All wildcats are listed on CITES Appendix I or II).
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