I’ve been interested in learning “the truth” about the creature variously called the panther, painter, puma, cougar or mountain lion. Twice over the holidays, they slipped into conversations at parties–folks swearing they or someone they knew had seen one in southwestern Virginia here.
Let’s just say, pending the piece that will end up filling my column-inches in February, that the myth of the animal is very much alive; the reality of the existence any resident breeding wild mountain lions has no support, according to the Easterncougar.org site.
They do exist elsewhere, however, and there are breeding populations in the Everglades and out west. One was spotted for the first time since 1904 in Kansas–and shot–in 2007.
So what’s your take? Have you or someone reliable you know or know of seen a panther in Virginia or in your home state (or neighborhood?)
Okay, Doug, show us the picture of the one you took from your hot tub last summer. If anybody has pictures, it would be you. Or are you going to tell me you hit one with your bike like this poor guy?
I’d like to believe they’re out there–helping the Subarus control the deer population. But the facts say probably no Pumas on Goose Creek.
FACT: the largest cougar killed in North America weighed 276 pounds! Meow!