Does a Population of Cougars Exist in Michigan?

  title={Does a Population of Cougars Exist in Michigan?},
  author={Allen Kurta and Michael K. Schwartz and Charles R. Anderson},
ABSTRACT After analyzing DNA obtained from fecal samples gathered in Michigan, Swanson and Rusz (2006) claimed that 83% of identified scats were from cougars, indicating to them that a population of these large carnivores existed in the state. In this paper, we identify problems with their methodology, suggest that they unreasonably extrapolated their conclusions and point out that their results are improbable, especially in light of no other evidence in the scientific literature suggesting the… 

Genetic Confirmation of Cougars (Puma concolor) in Eastern Canada

Abstract - This paper presents the results of a long-term study to detect the presence of Puma concolor (Cougar) in eastern Canada. We installed 38 scratching posts to attract wild Cougars and

Using Stable Carbon Isotopes to Distinguish Wild from Captive Wolves

This new evidence suggests that, while some Wolves are escaping from captivity, at least three animals have apparently dispersed into the area, adding new urgency to the preparation of conservation plans for the potential natural recovery of this endangered species in the region.

Conservation Planning with Large Carnivores and Ungulates in Eastern North America: Learning from the Past to Plan for the Future

  • J. Ray
  • Environmental Science
  • 2010
While large mammals are often important targets of conservation ­activities in their own right, they can serve as effective tools for designing ­conservation landscapes and management measures at the



Detection and Classification of Cougars in Michigan Using Low Copy DNA Sources

Abstract Sporadic reports of cougars (Puma concolor) have occurred in Michigan since its official classification as extirpated in the 1930s. We collected 297 scats from 12 areas in Michigan with

Identifying lynx and other North American felids based on MtDNA analysis

A protocol to distinguish among all four felid species of northern North America (lynx, bobcat [Lynx rufus], cougar [Felis concolor], and domestic cat [ Felis catus]) using mtDNA is developed and validated.

Does the Cougar Inhabit Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore?

Track surveys and camera stations were conducted in Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, Michigan from November 2004 through April 2005 and found no evidence supporting the presence of cougars at SBDNL.

DNA Analysis of Hair and Scat Collected Along Snow Tracks to Document the Presence of Canada Lynx

Abstract Snow tracking is often used to inventory carnivore communities, but species identification using this method can produce ambiguous and misleading results. DNA can be extracted from hair and


Based on measures of gene flow, extinction risk in the near future appears low and Bayesian assignment to population based on individual genotypes showed that cougars in this region were best described as a single panmictic population.

Genomic ancestry of the American puma (Puma concolor).

The marked uniformity of mtDNA and a reduction in microsatellite allele size expansion indicates that North American pumas derive from a recent (late Pleistocene circa 10,000 years ago) replacement and recolonization by a small number of founders who themselves originated from a centrum of puma genetic diversity in eastern South America.


Dispersal is the movement of an animal from its natal range upon reaching age of independence (Bekoff 1989). While subadult (i.e., prepubescent individual independent of its mother's care; Logan and

Molecular tracking of mountain lions in the Yosemite Valley region in California: genetic analysis using microsatellites and faecal DNA

This analysis provided a minimum estimate of 16 mountain lions living in or travelling through Yosemite Valley from March 1997 to August 1998, and demonstrated that faecal DNA analysis is an effective method for detecting and identifying individual mountain lions.

A Virus Reveals Population Structure and Recent Demographic History of Its Carnivore Host

It is demonstrated that a fast-evolving virus (feline immunodeficiency virus) can reveal details of the contemporary population structure and recent demographic history of its natural wildlife host that were not apparent from host genetic data and would be impossible to obtain by other means.

Desert Puma: Evolutionary Ecology And Conservation Of An Enduring Carnivore

This is a scholarly monograph that presents the results of a 10-year field study of the ecology of the desert puma in the Chihuahua Desert of New Mexico. With the increasing recognition of the