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'Mountain lions are not a risk to humans'

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Offline Vince T

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'Mountain lions are not a risk to humans'
« Reply #15 on: December 14, 2006, 09:20:59 PM »
Quote from: "Boot Canyon 1 Cougar"
How many miles would you have to go in any direction from this this point to really be in the country where there are few homes, etc.?


Most of the area to the south of the wildflower center is undeveloped...for many miles.  The park is bordered on the on the north by a heavily populated subdivision.  On the east by a moderate-to-heavily populated subdivision, and on the west by Mopac and then another heavily populated subdivision.

I hunt about 5 miles south and west of the wildflower center off FM 1826...which is becoming more and more populated each day.

Three of my friends live less than a quarter mile from the wildflower entrance...they found the news "interesting" to say the least.

Vince

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Offline RichardM

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maybe not...
« Reply #16 on: December 15, 2006, 09:22:24 AM »
Now they're backtracking:

Quote from: "[url
http://www.statesman.com/news/content/news/stories/local/12/15/15mtlions.html[/url]"]Mountain lion in Southwest Austin?

Wildflower center closes hiking trails, although it says there probably isn't a cougar around.
By Marty Toohey
AMERICAN-STATESMAN STAFF
Friday, December 15, 2006

First off, it might not have been a mountain lion. Could have been a dog, could have been a bobcat. Studies show that an overwhelming majority of the time, it's not actually a mountain lion.

But then again, it might have been a mountain lion that was spotted Nov. 27 in Southwest Austin near the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center. The sighting is unconfirmed.

In response, the center temporarily closed its four miles of hiking trails Nov. 29 as a precautionary measure. If there are no more sightings, the trails will probably open in early January, spokeswoman Michelle Bryant said.

Experts with the center and the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department say mountain lions, which are also called cougars and pumas, pose minimal danger to humans.

John Young, a mountain lion expert with the wildlife department, said Austin is not a suitable habitat, and "99.9 percent of the time, a mountain lion is going to see a person and go the other way."

A 1991 study analyzing attacks in Canada and the United States, cited in Wildflower pamphlets, found 53 documented attacks by mountain lions over the previous 100 years, nine of which were fatal.

Young gets called to several mountain lion sightings each year. He said he hasn't actually found evidence of one. Usually, he finds dog tracks.

He found no evidence of a mountain lion at the wildflower center, he said, and if one was there, it has probably moved on.

Mark Simmons, an ecologist with the wildflower center, said the possibility that a mountain lion passed through the greenbelts around Austin could be viewed as good news.

"If you've got the predator at the top of the food chain here, it shows the (ecological) system is functioning" in the greenbelts, he said. "Austin should be proud of that."

He added that although attacks have happened, "I think you're more likely to be hit on the head by a coconut than be attacked by a mountain lion."

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SHANEA

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« Reply #17 on: December 15, 2006, 11:25:31 AM »
Quote
If there are no more sightings, the trails will probably open in early January,


Wow - big window there!  

Mountain Lion sighting in BIBE, park will reopen in early Jan.  Bear sighting in the BASIN, park will reopen in early Jan.  (just joking folks).

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Offline randell

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Re: maybe not...
« Reply #18 on: December 15, 2006, 12:53:51 PM »
Quote
In response, the center temporarily closed its four miles of hiking trails Nov. 29 as a precautionary measure. If there are no more sightings, the trails will probably open in early January, spokeswoman Michelle Bryant said.


Nobody is going to see them if they close the trails...
There's nothing like a good quest to get you intimate with a place. - Tom Clynes

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Offline RichardM

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Re: maybe not...
« Reply #19 on: December 15, 2006, 02:24:03 PM »
Quote from: "randell"
Quote
In response, the center temporarily closed its four miles of hiking trails Nov. 29 as a precautionary measure. If there are no more sightings, the trails will probably open in early January, spokeswoman Michelle Bryant said.

Nobody is going to see them if they close the trails...

Yeah, but the center is right next to the bicycle veloway, which gets tons of traffic.

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Offline 01ACRViper

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'Mountain lions are not a risk to humans'
« Reply #20 on: December 15, 2006, 02:35:45 PM »
a friend of mine works in UT's wild-plant-growing type area along town lake, just south of Redbud Island, and a mountain lion has been spotted several times and scat/tracks are everywhere. there are a ton of deer in there, and it is surrounded by 8 foot fence, so it's almost a supermarket for that lion.

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Offline RichardM

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'Mountain lions are not a risk to humans'
« Reply #21 on: December 15, 2006, 02:50:05 PM »
Quote from: "01ACRViper"
a friend of mine works in UT's wild-plant-growing type area along town lake, just south of Redbud Island, and a mountain lion has been spotted several times and scat/tracks are everywhere. there are a ton of deer in there, and it is surrounded by 8 foot fence, so it's almost a supermarket for that lion.

While attending good old O. Henry Jr. High, I always wanted to hop the fence and explore that area.



Seems kinda small for a panther, but then he doesn't need to go far to find food.

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Offline Joe

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Mountain Lion in San Antonio
« Reply #22 on: December 15, 2006, 03:13:42 PM »
There was a mountain lion reported last month by two Houston birders at Mitchell Lake Audubon Center, which is located on the south side of San Antonio.

Here's some of the e-mail:

Quote
I have a question for you:  Have you ever seen a cougar at Mitchell Lake?  My husband and I were there on Nov. 21 and saw pretty much the same birds as you did, but we were shocked to also encounter a cougar strolling down the road in front of our car!  We nearly drove off the road!  It didn't seem too wary and was in plain view for several minutes.  I had no idea cougars were in that area.  I just wondered if it was a common sighting, or are we the only ones who have seen one there?  We should have stopped in at the office and reported it, but we kept trying to convince ourselves it was just a bobcat.  It had a long, thick tail, though, so couldn't have been a bobcat.  And it was way too large to be a domestic cat.  Were we just hallucinating?
The real desert is a land which reveals its true character only to those who come with courage, tolerance and understanding. - Randall Henderson

http://www.bigbendchat.com/portal/forum/el-saloacuten/joe-a-memorial/

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Offline TexasGirl

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'Mountain lions are not a risk to humans'
« Reply #23 on: December 19, 2006, 12:40:58 PM »
Wow, Viper, that's amazing.  Thanks for sharing that tidbit.
As a matter of fact, I _do_ have an opinion on that....

 


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