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Urge Wyoming to decrease hunting quotas and allow the state's lion population to recover.

There are several mountain lion research projects, run by a variety of organizations within the state of Wyoming. Read below to see project descriptions.

Always a work in progress, please contact us if we are missing work or new projects have started up.

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  • The status of puma concolor in Wyoming.

  • State law and regulations affecting cougars.

  • The history of cougars in Wyoming.

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Wyoming Mountain Lion Research

Wyoming Game & Fish Department

The Department has written and implemented the current mountain lion management plan since 2006 in the state of Wyoming. This document includes information about mountain lion life history and ecology, traditional and adaptive management approaches for the state of Wyoming, nuisance mountain lion management such as compensating owners for livestock depredation, human interactions, public information and education efforts, and future research and management needs which the Department aims to fund if possible.

Panthera Puma Program and Teton Cougar Project

Click here to visit their research page.

The project was founded in 2001 and is based around Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Currently led by Dr. Mark Elbroch through Panthera, the project focuses on behavior and ecology of mountain lions in an effort to better manage the species in increasingly human-dominated habitat. Since launching, the project has collared more than 130 mountain lions and uses many innovate, modern research methods such as GPS collars and motion-triggered cameras to track and monitor puma movements and behavior. Their research focuses on elucidating population dynamics, habitat selection, foraging ecology, interactions with other carnivores, puma social behaviors, human-carnivore conflict mitigation, and the impact of reintroduced wolves on puma populations.

The Cougar Fund

Click here to visit their research page.

The Cougar Fund was founded in 2001 in Jackson, Wyoming and the current president is Dr. Rick Hopkins. It aims at protecting mountain lions and other carnivores across North and South America. The organization has three main focal areas: education, science and conservation, and advocacy. The Cougar Fund supports using peer-reviewed science as the foundation for progressive mountain lion management, and supports raising public awareness, education, and conservation-oriented research. The Cougar Fund has supported many different research projects including Yellowstone Cougar Project and the Teton Cougar Project.

Yellowstone Cougar Project

Click here to visit their research page.

Research on mountain lions in Yellowstone National Park has been going on since 1986 through the Hornocker Wildlife Institute (HWI). HWI falls under the Wildlife Conservation Society and is currently led by Dr. Toni Ruth. Much of the research has focused on predator-prey interactions. The project's objectives are to 1) monitor the population by gathering data on population size, survival rates, causes of mortality, and natality rates, and then compare this with population data from the Yellowstone area before the wolf reintroduction; 2) evaluate predation impacts on elk and mule deer by cougars influenced by wolves; 3) investigate competition between cougars, wolves, and bears; and 4) use this information to inform management decisions in the greater Yellowstone region.

University of Wyoming

Click here to visit their research page.

Many professors and students have studied mountain lions over the years. Dr. Holly Ernest in the Department of Veterinary Sciences at UW has led research on mountain lions to investigate their population genetic structure, develop new genetics tools, and monitor disease. The Wyoming Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit is through the Department of Zoology and Physiology at UW. Research by Dr. Kevin Monteith focuses on large mammals, primarily ungulates but has also involved mountain lions. Nutritional ecology, behavior, life-history strategies, and population dynamics of large mammals, predator-prey interactions, and the effects of harvest strategies and novel disturbance on large mammal populations are the primary research interests addressed by Dr. Monteith and his lab.

ON AIR: Phil Carter - One Step Forward, Two Steps Back

03/19/13 An Audio Interview with Julie West, MLF Broadcaster

In this edition of our audio podcast ON AIR, MLF Volunteer Julie West interviews mountain lion program manager Phil Carter of Animal Protection of Wyoming. Carter discusses the often ridiculous lengths the Wyoming Department of Game and Fish will go to to disregard the public, bury scientific research, and ignore all common sense. Trying to protect mountain lions in Wyoming and incorporate the best science into management has turned into a game of one step forward, two steps back.