Woodland stream.

Colorado Researching Cougars on the Urban Edge

Colorado Division of Parks and Wildlife--the state agency responsible for managing cougars in Colorado--annually allows residents to kill about 350 cougars for fun. Yet ironically, the department has proven to be fairly humane (compared to agencies in other states) when it comes to resolving cougar-human encounters. CDPW collars and tracks cougars that live on the urban edge. They relocate young cats that accidentally wander into town and are even conducting research on the effectiveness of hazing cougars to teach them to avoid people. The radio collar study has shown that surprisingly, numerous cougars live close to town, yet they are seldom seen. The cats are skilled at avoiding people and very rarely pose a safety threat. CDPW kills about nine cougars annually for public safety. Some of these cases may be a result of the trophy hunting season. When hunters kill adult cats, orphaned juveniles may not have all the skills they need to hunt wild prey and are more likely to wander into human-populated areas. Though CDPW appears to have mixed feelings towards cougars and conflicting policies, it is refreshing to see a state agency conducting research and reminding the public how to coexist peacefully with their wild neighbors. Now if only they would reduce the cougar sport hunting quota...
View or write comments on this article.



Copyright 1988-2018. Material produced by the Mountain Lion Foundation is protected under copyright laws. Permission to rebroadcast or duplicate is granted for non-commercial use when the Mountain Lion Foundation is credited.