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friend of a friend got a mountain lion today

Discussion in 'Hunting' started by Clark, Feb 12, 2013.

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  1. Davek1977

    Davek1977 Member

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    Predators need to be managed like any other game animal. I have no issues with anyone legally taking a mountain lion, as they are doing mother nature a service no different than a deer or squirrel hunter. A balance must be maintained, and an unchecked population of mountain lions can have a devastating effect on game populations. Here in westernSouth Dakota, as mountian lions increased in number, elk, deer, and especially bighorn sheep drastically declined. In one area of SD...Custer State Park....30 elk calves were tagged. SIXTEEN...over half...were killed by lions within the year. 50% mortality, due to a single species of predator, is simply unacceptable
     
  2. H&Hhunter

    H&Hhunter Moderator

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    As I mentioned earlier. They are a big game animal that needs to be managed just like any other. Thanks for the supporting data Dave.:)

    I worked on a lion depredation contract in central NM back in the mid 90's. Bighorn sheep had taken a hit due to brain worms. They were trying to get the populations back to healthy levels. After doing a predation study they found that we had a 96% mortality rate in lambs due to lion predation. We ran dogs in area for several years killing several lion but primarily, simply putting pressure on them to leave the area especially during lambing season.

    It was successful to a degree as the depredation numbers went down by half. I'm not sure how the herd health is today in that area.

    When an area is in balance in regards to predator prey numbers lions are not a probelm at all. But when they gte out of balance either way is when we start having problems. Lions are carefully managed in most western states.
     
  3. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

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    Some 25 or 30 years ago, a trap-and-tag program was done in Big Bend National Park. Over 800,000 acres, there. The Chisos Mountains, in the southern center of the park, are maybe 200,000 acres. The expectation for the Chisos was maybe a couple of pairs of lions.

    The final count in the Chisos was 22 lions.

    Deer hang around the tourist camping areas, mostly.

    Lions were a problem for Texas Parks & Wildlife in the early stages of the restoration of the desert bighorn. As near as I can tell, there was a good bit of very quiet SSS. The bighorns are now above 1,400 in the various refuge areas and on private land.
     
  4. cal30_sniper

    cal30_sniper Member

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    Art,

    What's your best guess for the number of lions on the Terlingua/State Park side of Big Bend compared to the National Park? All the hiking we've ever done down there, I caught a lot more sign of mountain lion on the state park side than in the national park. I even came across a den once up in one of the old Uranium mines in the Solitario. Didn't stick around there too long.

    I know dad tells a story of my great grandmother rounding up a lion in amongst the cattle they used to run down there. I believe it was somewhere on the Fresno creek south of the Solitario where that happened. He said things got a little hairy there for a bit.
     
  5. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

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    I really don't have a clue about comparative population density. Off the cuff, I'd think that BBNP would have more, due to my opinion that there is likely more prey. Chisos rainfall averages two to three times as much as the area between Hwy 118 and US 67.

    As far as seeing sign, my feeling there is that in the common hiking areas, the type of soil is more likely to show sign in the state park than in BBNP.

    The last few years, though, I've rather dropped out of touch from my more active times. Too much sitting around the house, unfortunately.
     
  6. 351 WINCHESTER

    351 WINCHESTER Member

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    I have been blessed to have seen 4 in my native state of Florida. My first was in the mid 70's in west Cocoa and the last to date was in Clay county. We don't shoot them because they are endangered, but they are prudy to look at.
     
  7. Patocazador

    Patocazador Member

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    I read where they released a few Texas cougars south of Okeefenokee about 8-10 years ago but that they were all killed, either hit by cars or shot.
    All the sightings near me have been dismissed by the FWC even though there was hair and tracks that verified one of them. I was told privately that they didn't want to acknowledge them due to ESA requirements and tons of paperwork. Therefore, they don't "officially" exist north of Big Cypress Swamp and the Glades.
     
  8. dogrunner

    dogrunner Member

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    The reason those Tesas cougars were brought in was to add some diversity to the gene pool. The Florida cats were being born with anomalys such as undecended testicles, heart problems et-al.........just not enough animals to assure healthy stock. I believe the surviving females, after they'd bred and raised kittens, were recaptured.

    From what I've read there was really no choice and if not done, we'd have lost the species here.

    Incidentally most of the road kills appear to be young males striking out for new territory..........unfortunately there ain't none in Florida now. Had one turned into a roadrug a couple miles from my home on I/95 No. of Daytona a year or so back...male. For all the woods time I have spent I have never laid eye's one one, tho my hunting buddy had one walk across the Ocala Naval Bombing Range perimeter road about 50 feet from him two seasons back. They are here, but truly endangered.
     
  9. Patocazador

    Patocazador Member

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    dogrunner,
    I believe you're talking about the ones in South Fla. The ones they released in North Fla. around Osceola NF were all sterilized prior to release. The release was to see if the habitat could support them so an introduction of Fla. panthers could be established there. They abandoned that idea after they all were killed.
     
  10. TexasPatriot.308

    TexasPatriot.308 Member

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    in my part of Central Texas, we got a lot of em, people have lost lots of horses and livestock to them, I have seen 2 in daylight when I did not have an opportunity to shoot. dont think I would eat one, but would be a good lookin mount and we seem to have a few around.
     
  11. dogrunner

    dogrunner Member

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    Yeah, you're right Pato........If I recall correctly that test resulted in some livestock being killed, a bit of public outrage followed and the project was shelved, I'd forgotten about that one but I believe that there is still some semblence of a breeding reminant population in the Okefenokee, I've read of reports from So. Ga..

    You are aware that we've had documented lion predation in Volusia Co. aren't you......Tomoka WMA, & Relay in Flagler.........still, there's just no place for 'em to go.......if the FWC succeded in establishing a population it'd be very similar to what we now have with black bears.....in every back yard and garbage can. Heck, I counted five roadkills on 40 last deer season.

    Too many roads, and way, way too many people too damn quick! Alligator alley, 40, and 19 are three roads for example that should NEVER have been built!
     
  12. Patocazador

    Patocazador Member

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    Yeah, the one I was referring to with hair and a track by a deer kill was in Volusia county and they said it must have been an "escapee from an attraction."
     
  13. jaysouth

    jaysouth Member

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    Sell it to a chinese restaurant! that cat would make enough kung pau kitty for a couple of day's buffet line.
     
  14. H&Hhunter

    H&Hhunter Moderator

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    Ohhhh you so funny!!:D
     
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