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Cougars in Ohio

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Cougars

Ohio is home to a growing population of cougars, also known as mountain lions or pumas, which are apex predators and the largest wildlife species in the state. Although not native to Ohio, they have been found in several regions since the late 2000s. Cougars usually hunt at night and prefer deer as their prey but can also feast on smaller mammals and reptiles. While Ohio’s cougar population may be relatively small and sparsely distributed, sightings are becoming more frequent.

cougars in Ohio

Are there Cougars in Ohio

Recent evidence of big cats, such as cougars, making a home in Ohio has been thoroughly reviewed and there is still no clear consensus on whether these cats indeed inhabit the area. Not only are there disputes over sightings that have occurred, but genetic testing has also had its share of difficulties when it comes to determining an initial insight into the matter. 

Cougars in Toledo Ohio

Toledo Ohio is home to many amazing animals, including cougars. Cougar sightings have been on the rise in Toledo, with more families and individuals claiming to spot these wild cats out on their porches or in the nearby woods. Although this might come as a shock to some, it’s actually quite common for Ohio’s wildlife population to make its way into urban areas. In any case, it’s important to remember that cougars are naturally timid creatures, and if you do spot one, it’s best to remain quiet and observe rather than disturb them.

cougars

Were there cougars in Ohio?

The question of whether or not cougars were ever present in Ohio has been a topic of debate amongst wildlife enthusiasts. While the belief that cougars inhabited the state was widely held in the 1960s and 70s, the Ohio Department of Natural Resources has continued to deny the presence of those large cats to this day. Today, there have been numerous reported sightings of cougars throughout southern Ohio and even as far east as Pennsylvania; despite these reports, authorities are still refusing to accept their existence.

When was the last cougar sighting in Ohio?

The Ohio Division of Wildlife recently reported the most recent major cougar sighting in Ohio was on July 1st, 2020 near Virginia Run in Licking County. This marks the first confirmed sighting since five semi-wildcats were released in Ashtabula County back in 2016. Although no additional cougars have been seen since then, this is not thought to be the last one in the area as there are believed to be other individual cats living on the margins of society in Ohio’s landscape.

Reference:

https://ohiohistorycentral.org/index.php?title=Cougar&mobileaction=toggle_view_desktop

https://www.geaugaparkdistrict.org/question/are-there-mountain-lions-in-ohio/

https://www.dallasnews.com/sports/other-sports/2021/01/16/sightings-of-mountain-lions-are-rare/

https://www.ohiowildlifecenter.org/welcome-back-little-cat/

https://ohiohistorycentral.org/w/Cougar

https://www.wtrf.com/belmont-county/are-mountain-lions-roaming-the-ohio-valley-social-media-posts-are-checked-out/

https://www.cleveland.com/outdoors/2014/07/mountain_lion_spotting_roaming.html

Author Profile
Jeevan Kodiyan
Zoologist | Wildlife Conservation at Animals Research

An animal enthusiast with an interest in zoology, studying the behavior and activities of animals in the wild habitat. I work on research projects related to species conservation and endangered species protection. I also leverage zoology to become an educator, educating others about the importance of protecting our natural environment and the beauty of animals in their natural habitats.

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An animal enthusiast with an interest in zoology, studying the behavior and activities of animals in the wild habitat. I work on research projects related to species conservation and endangered species protection. I also leverage zoology to become an educator, educating others about the importance of protecting our natural environment and the beauty of animals in their natural habitats.

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