Thursday, September 18, 2008

Cougars versus Dogs

Previously, on the Dog Scoop, Ms. X had published a series of Dog versus Wolf posts showing what happened when man's best friend came face to face or canine to canine with his ancestors. Well, wolves aren't the only predators we face. In Oregon, the human and canine inhabitants are increasingly coming face to face with... cougars.

According to the story from KOIN News, the state's cougar population has risen to 6,000. Now I'm not a wildlife biologists, but I can do a little math. The entire state of Oregon is 97,052 square miles.

A typical cougar has a range of 50 to 150 square miles. If we're even conservative, 6,000 times 50 is 300,000 square miles. In fact, according the to Columbus Zoo fact sheet, "Except for mothers and their young, adult cougars like to live alone" and "a male cougar is very protective of his territory". So if even half of those cougars are adult males, we're still talking about 150,000 square miles to support all those cats.


Ms. X is not a wildlife biologist. According to the news articles, the cougar population has risen substantially since hunting with dogs was banned in 1994.

What a shame. Too bad the legislature that approved the ban couldn't ban the cougars from hunting the dogs.

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