Re(2): Summary of the facts in New England

Well, the DNA report is what it is, read it. Interesting reading. The wording on these is "closest match", not "exact match". The South Dakota cats being a "closest match" actually makes sense. You are aware that they have extracted cougar DNA from bones at native American sites from long ago, and gee, it matches the South Dakota cats too! Also DNA from Canadian cats shows this trait. Since North America was the original range of these cats, that's not a real shocker.

Your response assumes that the Milford cat walked all the way from South Dakota some 2,000 miles, which even the USFW isnít sure of. Itís hard to understand why any would continue to repeat these statements when they are misleading, at the least.. There isnít shred of evidence that shows this animal anywhere west of Minnesota prior to it crossing into Wisconsin. And the trail of evidence mysterious disappears after it crosses into Michigan. We are lead to believe that it moves undetected across Ontario until it supposedly reaches Lack George. By the way, 6 months after this cat was hit, New York fish and wildlife denied they had ever confirmed a cougar to the Syracuse newspaper! While in Wisconsin it traveled at an average of 3 miles per day which is typical of dispersers but in order to reach Milford after entering Michigan to would have to maintain a relatively straight line all the way to Long Island Sound to reach Milford in June. It zig zagged across Wisconsin before heading east and you expect us to swallow hook, line, and sinker that it suddenly changed its behavior and made a bee line to Milford without deviating in any direction as if drawn by some invisible force? But thereís more. Short of Itís final destination on Long Island Sound it has to make a left turn and head 100 miles east to Matunuck so it can be blamed for killing a deer in some womanís backyard, then reverse course and show up on the Merritt Parkway where it is struck by an SUV. This is the kind of scenario you see on Haven, not in scientific literature. The Matunuck cat has also been seen after the cat was killed in Milford CT. Rhode Island fish and wildlife deny they have confirmed a cat there (since the 1850s) as well to this day.

The notion that no female cougars are found in the East is speculative and can never be proven. This statement is not supported by the evidence from Quebec. In fact a lactating female cougars was road killed there near the NH border. Because it had some SA DNA that only suggests some ancestor may have been kept as a pet, not this animal. Skeptics insist that the only cougars in the region are escaped pets and state agencies say similar things so they can side step the ESA and also avoid managing these animals. This may be a prove to be a serious blunder in the long run because it that ignores the potential role of domestic animals in reproduction. People keep female cougars as pets and most, but not all have them neutered. We canít say say with absolute certainty that no fertile female cougars ever escaped or were released. Even if 50 males reached in New England but no females followed them that doesnít eliminate natural reproduction. It would only take a single female to appear on the scene from any source-pets, eastern Canadian provinces, western migrants, to begin this process. And female cougars also make these epic journeys on occasion (800+ miles in one instance) so it needs to be given consideration in this debate. Most people who follow this issue believe female lions are present in the East now. Kittens have been seen on numerous occasions and in a few cases killed. Official explanations on these mortalities are suspect. Evidence has been recovered in Vermont and Maine where female cougars with kittens were observed. Other events in Nova Scotia, Quebec, and Rhode Island should be classified as possible or probable. Iím surprised you havenít mentioned any of these in your statement. Alan Rabinowitz believes that a population of cougars exists in the region and is maintaining themselves. You apparently donít. Are you suggesting you know about this phenomenon than the Director of Panthera? Canada is one obvious source of these mountain lions and the route they would have to travel to reach the US is 1/10th the distance to the Black Hills. Confirmation sites in New Brunswick are only about 600 miles from Milford, yet officials...... and apparently you, insist that this Milford cat took the long route that is 1800 miles more distant. Even if that is true, it canít be said that no mountain lions from eastern Canada have ever reached New England in the past. And you canít say that none will ever migrate here in the future. All the eastern Canadian provinces have cougars present. Any of them could walk to Maine in a month or two and go further south in another 60 days. Only a fool would say they canít. Michigan dismissed the reports there for years, but yet, there they were. Like they are in New England. And then there was that pesky female with kitten confirmation in Vermont ......


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