Where's the cougar? Click here to find a map showing where Cougars reside in the Kootenay's
The cougar is the largest of the three wild cats in Canada and is a formidable hunter.
A large male cougar can weigh over 100 kg but more likely to be in the 60-80 kg range. Typically females are about 25% smaller than males. Cougars are strictly carnivorous and usually hunt deer, but will take young moose, elk or bighorn sheep. Cougars will also prey on rabbits, squirrels, beavers or other small animals when the opportunity presents itself.
- Cougars are “spot and stalk” hunters and have extremely good vision.
- Cougars have large home ranges and males have been recorded as having travelled over 50 kilometers in one day.
- Young cougars stay with their mother for up to two years at which time she forces them off to fend for themselves.
- Many urban incidents occur with young cougars that have not yet learned how to hunt effectively or older animals that can no longer hunt in the wilds.
- Cougars are secretive animals and are seldom seen by hikers.
- Cougars also go by the name mountain lion, puma, and panther.
- Cougars have one of the widest distributions of mam-mals in the Americas and can be found all the way from Patagonia to the Yukon border.
Cougar Safety Tips!
Attacks by cougar are rare but can be fatal, espe-cailly if young children are involved. In all cases you must fight back as cougar attacks are always predatory and the cougar sees you as a meal. Use rocks, sticks or whatever you have at hand to pro-tect yourself.If you see a cougar that is watching you, maintain eye contact with the cougar and speak to it in a loud firm voice. Reinforce the fact that you are a human and not an easy target. Back out of the area and seek assistance or shelter.