Cougars (Mountain Lions) in Metro Portland? Yes, and Here’s Why!

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The Heretic

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dorothy-big.jpg

We have cougars and bears and coyotes and deer and little bunny rabbits and raccoons and so on. Where you find deer in Oregon you will often find cougar. Those west hills, the Forest Park, probably contain a number of cougar and bear.

This weekend I found bear scat in my driveway.

I live on a mountain outside of Portland between Scholls and Newberg (I commute into Portland everyday). I grew up in Scholls some 50 years ago. We had cougar around the farms then. Never heard of any attacks here.

Average Number of Deaths per Year in the U.S

Bee/Wasp 53
Dogs 31
Spider 6.5
Rattlesnake 5.5
Mountain lion 1
Shark 1
Alligator 0.3
Bear 0.5
Scorpion 0.5
Centipede 0.5
Elephant 0.25
Wolf 0.1
Horse 20
Bull 3

Maybe we should hunt down and kill all bees/wasps, horses and dogs??

I am not afraid of wildlife. I moved to the mountain to be "away from the things of man" and I like wildlife.

I am also not one of those people who think we must kill all predators just because they might, in some rare circumstance, be a threat to humans.
 
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The Heretic

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Interesting your list does not include Deer and Elk who kill people every year by standing in the road looking stupid.
Moose kill/injure more people than grizzly bears

Hippos kill more people than African lions

More people die from having their television fall on them than die from shark attack.

People fear what they are taught be fearful of by watching TV.

I've had more than one friend wind up in the hospital wondering how they got there when they hit a deer while riding their motorcycles.

I see deer several times a week when I come down off the mountain. I try to be careful in certain areas because I see them there more often. Yesterday saw one in one of their popular areas - they deerly (pun intended) love those apple trees.

Cougar are often seen in the same area. Although I have not been lucky enough to see one yet - I am hoping eventually I will.
 

Certaindeaf

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A mommy raccoon mauled my little 13yr old 4lb dog the other day.. dang it! It coulda been way worse.. no guts hanging out or nothing but a severe limp for a couple days. I can't blame either one but only really myself though I did kinda act quickly.. leaping to one yard of the scene 1/4 second after actual carnage commenced with revolver poised in hand. Half urban here and at 0600, I didn't want to wake the neighbors really.
 
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Running dogs for cats and bears wasn't just for the kill.
Before the ban, (in Oregon) there was a spring "pursuit" season, where no animals were taken, just pursued and treed.
This was done as a way for houndsmen to train their dogs.

The result was twofold though. It taught the cats and bears that it was best to avoid the sound/smell of dogs and humans. As a result, urban areas and suburban communities had few if any threats from apex predators.
The big critters learned, and in turn taught their young that dogs were bad juju, and to avoid those stinky, barking, baying critters.
That is no longer the case.
We are 3-4 generations (of cougars) removed from those experiences, and with the cougar population booming, fewer have learned to fear the scent of canine that is prevalent where people (dog owners) congregate.

So the urban dwellers are reaping what they've sown, and I have no pity for them. Someday someone will spot a cougar stalking kids on their way to school, or standing around at a bus stop. Hopefully before the cougar takes his/her quarry.
And while they may not attribute fido and fluffy's disappearance to one of the big cats, even though that is surely what will have happened, that's not necessarily a bad thing. That crazy cat lady in your neighborhood that has 12 or more kitties (that dig up your flowers and crap in your garden and leave muddy paw prints on your car/truck/boat) needs to have her little wildlife killers thinned out anyway.

The irony is, that when the urbanites start hand wringing over the safety of their kids/dogs/kitties, they turn to the very people who's endeavors they outlawed 20 years ago, and pay big dollars to people that used to pay them for the "service."

As someone said some years ago:
"Common sense has left the building."
All hail the age of "enlightenment!"

Too bad their "enlightenment" didn't include the fable of "the Scorpion and the Frog," or "the Farmer and the Serpent" and about the nature of the natural world and its occupants.
 
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The Heretic

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Yes cats are hard on the deer and elk numbers though.
Of course they are, those are their natural prey.

And African lions kill zebras.

Humans probably kill a lot more deer and elk than cougars do.

I don't kill all competition for game just because it makes more game for me to hunt. I don't shoot eagles because they kill fish.

Predators are part of the natural balance of life.

I leave them alone as long as they leave me alone. I haven't had one wild predator threaten me ever in my six decades of life, hunting and tromping around in the woods.

Dogs or humans on the other hand...
 

RicInOR

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Of course they are, those are their natural prey.

And African lions kill zebras.

Humans probably kill a lot more deer and elk than cougars do.

I don't kill all competition for game just because it makes more game for me to hunt. I don't shoot eagles because they kill fish.

Predators are part of the natural balance of life.

I leave them alone as long as they leave me alone. I haven't had one wild predator threaten me ever in my six decades of life, hunting and tromping around in the woods.

Dogs or humans on the other hand...
Let me guess, you have no issues with wolves either?
 

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