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Cougar Smart Ministry of Environment Cougar Distribution Cougars in British Columbia BC has largest population of cougars ( Puma concolor ) of any jurisdiction in North America Estimated population of 4000 – 6000 Weigh from 40–90 kg (90-200 lb) About 7 ft long (tail is 1/3 of body length)

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cougar smart

Cougar Smart

Ministry of Environment

slide3

Cougars in British Columbia

BC has largest population of cougars (Puma concolor) of any jurisdiction in North America

Estimated population of 4000 – 6000

cougar facts

Weigh from 40–90 kg (90-200 lb)

About 7 ft long (tail is 1/3 of body length)

Can leap 9 m (30 ft) from a standstill and 8 m (25 ft) straight up a cliff

Cougar Facts

cougar behavior

Primary prey is deer - will also feed on wild sheep, elk, rabbits, beaver, raccoons, grouse, and occasionally livestock.

Most active at dusk and dawn; but will roam and hunt at any time of the day or night and in all seasons.

Cougar Behavior

Young become independent late spring to summer - may roam widely in search of unoccupied territory. This is when cougars are most likely to conflict with humans.

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Cougar Attacks

Very rare

(8 deaths and 65 people injured in the last 200 years in BC)

slide7

Living in Cougar Country

Keep pets indoors or in secure kennels at night. Bring farm animals into enclosed sheds or barns at night, especially during calving or lambing seasons. Do not leave pet food or food scraps outside.

closely supervise children and be sure they are indoors by dusk

Living in Cougar Country

Closely supervise children and be sure they are indoors by dusk.

Light walkways and remove any heavy vegetation or landscaping near the house.

s tore garbage in cans with tight fitting lids so odors do not attract small mammals

Living in Cougar Country

Store garbage in cans with tight-fitting lids so odors do not attract small mammals.

Avoid feeding wildlife or landscaping with shrubs and plants that deer prefer to eat.

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Playing in Cougar Country

Hike in groups and make enough noise to prevent surprising a cougar. Avoid hiking alone. Keep small children close to the group, preferably in plain sight just ahead of you. Do not approach dead animals, especially recently killed or partially covered deer and elk.

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Playing in Cougar Country

Be aware of your surroundings, look for tracks, scratch piles, and partially covered droppings. Keep a clean camp. Reduce odors that may attract small mammals like racoons, which in turn attract cougars.

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Playing in Cougar Country

Store meat, other foods, pet food, and garbage in double plastic bags. Do not leave your pet tied at a campsite, which may also attract cougars.Carry bear spray

slide13

What To Do When You See a Cougar

Stop, stand tall and don’t run. Pick up small children immediately. Remember, a cougar’s instinct is to chase. Face the cougar, talk to it firmly and slowly back away. Always leave the animal an escape route.

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What To Do When You See a Cougar

Try to appear larger than the cougar by getting above it. (e.g., stepping up onto a stump). If wearing a jacket, hold it open to further increase your size. Do not take your eyes off the animal or turn your back. Do not crouch down or try to hide.

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What To Do When You See a Cougar

Never approach the animal, especially if it is near a kill or with kittens. Never corner the animal or offer it food. If the animal does not flee and shows signs of aggression be more assertive. Shout, wave your arms and throw rocks. If the cougar attacks, fight back aggressively and try to stay on your feet.

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If You See a Cougar

NEVER

Run

Turn your back

Play dead

Approach it

ALWAYS

Remain alert

Stay calm

Look big

Make noise

Fight back if it attacks