Officials in Connecticut are investigating possible evidence of a mountain lion in New Canaan after a woman on Fox Run Road reported spotting a large feline on March 30.
Five years ago, claims of a mountain lion in Connecticut would have been immediately dismissed or even laughed at. But on June 11, 2011 history was made when a wild mountain lion was struck by a vehicle and killed on Wilbur Cross Parkway in Milford, Connecticut. DNA analysis proved he was born in South Dakota.
Just twenty miles from where this famous cat was killed, state wildlife biologists are now taking photos of questionable tracks near the home of the woman who reported seeing a mountain lion last week.
Though more than 80 percent of lion sightings turn out to be false (with the most common culprits being smaller species of cats, canines, and deer), there is always the possibility of another lion making the epic trek from the Midwest all the way to the east coast.
The Mountain Lion Foundation advocates for enacting lion protection laws and regulations in eastern states to ensure any lion that turns up is legally protected. It will take many decades and generations for female lions to expand to the East and establish breeding populations in their historic range. But it is never too early to lay the groundwork for recolonization by increasing public support and legal protection for America's lion.