Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Connecticut Mountain Lion Was a Wild Animal

Necropsy on Connecticut mountain lion

Connecticut moutain lion hit by SUV near Milford.

This specific mountain lion was in the wild in Minnesota in 2009 -- the last time it was positively identified from its DNA. Sightings of a mountain lion in Michigan in January and May of 2010 are believed to be this animal.

Michigan Mountain Lion caught on camera, Jan 18, 2010,

The journey of this mountain lion is a testament to the wonders of nature and the tenacity and adaptability of this species. This mountain lion traveled a distance of more than 1,500 miles from its original home in South Dakota – representing one of the longest movements ever recorded for a land mammal and nearly double the distance ever recorded for a dispersing mountain lion.

I should say! This lean young male weighed in at 140-pounds and had messed with a Porcupine sometime in not-too-distant past, as quills were found buried under the animals tissue.


M said...

Holy crap! I never would have expected that kind of movement in a cougar.

I do wonder how sure they are about the DNA identification? I would be gang ho absolutely the same animal if it was found wearing a radio collar, tag, or ID chip but I wonder what the odds are in puma of getting two animals with identical dna markers and if the animal gene wise was distinctly different than the nearest resident populations?

PBurns said...

Yes they can ID individual animals. This is done quite frequently in some places in order to get a more accurate idea of animal populatios such as lynx, wolf, wolverines, which have very large territories and low population densities. Fur is collected from rub pads that are made from pieces of old carpet with small bent roofing nails keened over so they will hook on to the fur. Almost every animals goes nuts over the smell of beaver castoreum, and so the old rug patch is soaked in that, and the rub pad is nailed to a tree at the right height for the animal being surveyed. Fur samples are collected, and the rest is lab work and population modelig. DNA testing and identification of each animal is important, so as not to count the same animal two or three times.


Seahorse said...

Incredibly sad to have survived an epic journey, only to be nailed by a car.


grapfhics said...

He heard there were cougars in Greenwich, Stamford Darien, Westport & Fairfield.

seeker said...

I agree with Seahorse. It was a sad day when a magnificent animal like that was killed by a car. Maybe he would have gotten to DC and eaten a few politicians for us.

Debi and the TX JRTs.