Archive for Thursday, March 27, 2008

Mountain lion killed in Kansas

March 27, 2008


Mountain lion shot, killed in Kansas

They've been rumored to be in Lawrence for years, but tonight, proof may exist of a mountain lion in Kansas. Enlarge video

— Investigators plan to conduct a genetic analysis of a pelt taken from a mountain lion killed in Kansas to determine if it came from a captive bloodline or was a wild animal.

Their findings could put to rest the long-standing debate about whether wild mountain lions are roaming Kansas. The last documented wild mountain lion in Kansas was killed in Ellis County in 1904, said Bob Mathews, spokesman for the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks.

Tracy Galvin, a state Department of Wildlife and Parks game warden, started investigating local rumors of the cat killing about three weeks ago. On Monday, he took possession of the pelt from a mountain lion shot west of Medicine Lodge in November.

A Barber County resident said he shot the cat while cutting wood on his property. He saw the mountain lion nearby, walked to his truck, grabbed a rifle and shot it.

Charges are pending because it's illegal to shoot a mountain lion in Kansas unless it threatens life or property, Galvin said.

The landowner acknowledged he shot the cat and arranged to have the pelt returned from a Texas taxidermist, Galvin said, adding that the man reported that he previously had seen big cats in the area.

Matt Peek, a furbearer biologist for the Department of Wildlife and Parks, said the event is substantial. While reported Kansas sightings have numbered in the thousands, proof - such as tracks, droppings, a carcass or hair - has been nonexistent.

Neighboring states have plenty of proof of wild lions. A healthy population lives in a rugged part of southeast Colorado, within 80 miles of the Kansas border, Peek said.

Male mountain lions routinely range that far to establish a territory.

Nebraska has about 50 confirmations, most coming since 2004. Their cats have been traced to a growing population in South Dakota's Black Hills.

Missouri has about 10 mountain lion confirmations, including a road kill within a few miles of Kansas.

Oklahoma authorities found a mountain lion hit by a train about 40 miles south of the Kansas state line in 2004. It was wearing a tracking collar from South Dakota.

The kill in Barber County does not mean a population of mountain lions lives in Kansas.

"There could be some out there," Peek said. "We could very soundly say the number out there is very, very small. That is based on the lack of other evidence."


gr 8 years, 8 months ago

"Charges are pending because it's illegal to shoot a mountain lion in Kansas unless it threatens life or property, Galvin said."

I still don't see how you can be accused of shooting something that doesn't exist. Anyway, it sounds like it was threatening him - in broad daylight!

"I don't have a single problem with hunting. I hunt pheasant and eat what I shoot. But to kill just for the sake of shooting and killing is wrong."

Ummm.... Consumer1, you hunt, and eat it. You don't have to hunt to be able to eat. How is that any different than killing for the sake of killing something?

"and I condemn them for needing to kill out of fear." So you think it's better to kill for desire of appetite than it is for fear?

notajayhawk 8 years, 8 months ago

So let's see:

There are mountain lions in the state to the north of us.

There are mountain lions in the state to the east of us.

There are mountain lions in the state to the south of us.

There are mountain lions in the state to the west of us.

But there are no mountain lions in Kansas. Okay.

Um - do they have an aversion to wheat or something?

(By the way, the one that was hit by the car on 35 in Kansas City was within sight of my living room windows where I used to live. I'd swear I heard it gasp "Rock... chalk..." before it died.)

notajayhawk 8 years, 8 months ago


I'm not picking on you for typos, made won or too of them myself.

But a "hinting" expedition? :)

Hint: On the big tan kitty cat, the end with the teeth is not where you should try to kick his butt...

aginglady 8 years, 8 months ago

FYI. Until someone shows proof of something being in any particular county, it needs someone to verify it, and submit it to the groups that record these things. If no one reports is, brings in a carcass, photo, whatever, it isn't official. Say, you find an ornate turtle, five-lined skink, brown leg tarantula, bird,etc, on the road somewhere. Dead or Alive. You look it up in the book, see if that county has it on record. If not, it gets written up as to the location, maybe a photo of the body, and it gets sent in. Like mentioned, very common creatures can be already recorded all over around you, just no one reported it for that particular county. I have a journal from HS where we found pages of new found locations for various species.

Note: never put 15 or so tarantulas (live in SE KS) in a sealed five gallon pickle bucket overnight. In the morning, you open it to find one tarantula and one leg left. Oh the horrors that must have gone on in that bucket 's one-sq.-ft-plus floor overnight!

Calliope877 8 years, 8 months ago

gr said: "I still don't see how you can be accused of shooting something that doesn't exist. Anyway, it sounds like it was threatening him - in broad daylight!"

Mountain lions are not mythical creatures, they DO exist. And I don't think that it's far fetched to assume that they may exist in Kansas. The guy walked to his truck and got his rifle, which means at some point he probably had to turn his back on it -- if he could do that, then it wasn't threatening him.

aginglady 8 years, 8 months ago

I think gr's first comment was sarcasm, wasn't it..anyone?

lance1jhawk 8 years, 8 months ago

mariann- Do us all a favor and drink the magic kool-aid (Jonestown recipe), and take your Hippie A$$ out of the gene pool. You are so out of touch with how real people live, it actually disgusts me (I just threw up a little in my mouth thinking about it). Don't fear the gun- Fear the bullet Don't fear the thunder- Fear the lightning Don't fear the bark- Fear the Bite Open your eyes and mind, AND shut your MOUTH!

aginglady 8 years, 8 months ago

I don't think they sell that on the top shelf.

gr 8 years, 8 months ago

Yes, aginglady, some are wasted on most.

woodenfleaeater 8 years ago

That is a joke that they are not sure if mountain lions exist in Kansas. As a longtime hunter, I have seen some in my day. But if you report them, they are as good as dead, so I don't tell the KDWP. There are mountain lions in Kansas, and hopefully there will be for a long time to come.

Easy 8 years ago

I had one cross the road in front of my car, on Stull Road between Stull and Shawnee Heights about 6 months ago, no I was not drinking and no it was not a house cat.

somebodynew 8 years ago

notajay - OK even if you are not a jay that was one funny post. Just about spit my drink out on the keyboard. !!! Good one.

totalnirvana 8 years ago

Here are three photos I took of a cougar 5 years ago in Ottawa, KS. Taken with a Nikon coolpix w/ maximum zoom through a window - not the best quality but take a good look at the tail on this animal. I don't think it's a bobcat. My parents house on Old Hwy 50 just south of Ottawa, Kansas about a mile from I-35I saw this animal from the inside the house and quickly grabbed a digital point-and-shoot camera to take these photos through the window before it was out of sight.The date of these photos was October 02, 2003 at approximately 12:19 in the afternoon. Size estimate somewhere around 4 to 5 feet in length perhaps (not counting the tail)Estimated distance from camera between 50 and 60 feet from the camera (in the closest photo)

BigPrune 8 years ago

Didn't they find mountain lion scat up on west campus a few years ago and dna tests proved it was indeed from a mountain lion? Whatever happened with that?

kmat 8 years ago

I do hope this guy gets charged. Most of the time, they are not going to bother you. There are plenty of deer and other animals to hunt and a cougar isn't going after people unless their food sources are drying up. And if he did a have a gun nearby, then if it did come at him, he could have taken it down.Why would anyone kill such a magestic creature for the hell of it. Something's wrong with people like that.

Chris Golledge 8 years ago

Anonymous usergr (Anonymous) says:_______"I don't have a single problem with hunting. I hunt pheasant and eat what I shoot. But to kill just for the sake of shooting and killing is wrong."Ummm:. Consumer1, you hunt, and eat it. You don't have to hunt to be able to eat. How is that any different than killing for the sake of killing something?_____________Umm-Umm, if you don't sustain yourself by soaking up sunshine, you are sustaining yourself by taking life from something else, whether you perform the act of killing directly or pay someone else to do it for you, and neatly package the results. Even plants don't live in a state of grace because they compete with other plants for nutrients and light. I eat, and sometimes I hunt, but I would not have killed the cat.Other than that, yeah, it is peculiar that they deny the cats live in Kansas despite a lot of evidence, and when someone gets irrefutable evidence, they press charges.

Ken Miller 8 years ago

Total N: Do you have any photos of Bigfoot?

woodenfleaeater 8 years ago

I do not hunt deer, but deer hunting is a form of population control. There is not an overflow of mountain lions running across the roads and getting hit by automobiles. If people could not deer hunt, they would be running rampant.

woodenfleaeater 8 years ago

Cougars are as afraid of humans as we are of them. most of attacks are done out of fear. People need to use good judgement and common sense in mountain lion country.

jaywalker 8 years ago

totalnirvana:Definitely not a bobcat, they're much smaller than a cougar. I agree with the other poster, first shot made me think of a tabby as well, though I'm sure with the scale you're correct on size.I had a cougar/mountain lion run across the road in front of me one night north of Lawrence on way towards Mclouth (Lake Dabinawa) in the late '90s. Everyone I told laughed at me and then a few days later a man and his dog were attacked by one near Basehor/Bonner Springs area. No way to know if it was same one, but they are definitely around the state. And I've seen a couple bobcats up at Alvamar in the woods on the private side.

gr 8 years ago

"I eat, and sometimes I hunt, but I would not have killed the cat."Why?What is so opposing to killing a cat, but not a deer?And you never addressed that you don't have to kill an animal (nor pay someone to) to be able to eat.

woodenfleaeater 8 years ago

Belive me, if the mountain lion was coming to attack him, he would not have had time to load his gun, aim and fire. I think what we have here is.......MURDER!!Yeeeeoooowwww.....da da

Flap Doodle 8 years ago

Have they tested the scat?Scat never lies.

persevering_gal 8 years ago

Oh, those Wildcats. Why can't they just stay in Manhattan?

RedwoodCoast 8 years ago

Oh, I'll say that my dad did find some bear tracks in a field one day back in the late 1980's. Someone shot it the following week. The conclusion was that someone had released it somewhere around there.

tolawdjk 8 years ago

Wildlife and Parks doesn't want to acknowledge mountain lions due to the implications that it would bring. Much easier to remain in the "Nothing to see here, move along citizen."

RedwoodCoast 8 years ago

OK, I looked at those photos... and Multi, I agree with your housecat resemblance. My dad works as a county agricultural extension agent in SE Kansas. He probably spends more time out in the country stomping around in the woods than most people in that area, and he has yet to see anything in the 20+ years he has been doing so that would indicate the presence of mountain lions.I don't normally watch television, but there is a show on some channel where they actually investigate odd animal sitings. My dad often receives reports from farmers about 'black panthers' laying up on top of haybails or darting into the woods. This particular show investigated a number of 'big cat' sitings, and even attempted recreations of the sitings to determine the size of the animal based upon objects around it. Well, they essentially concluded that people are just seeing domesticated cats and letting their imaginations run wild. Sure, some of the sitings in the southwest did turn out to be jaguars, but people for the most part were just seeing normal-sized domesticated cats.But with regard to these photos, it is my opinion that we are looking at an orange domesticated cat. Mountain lions usually have dark-tipped tails, and this cat does not. Also, if you look at the height of the weeds into which it disappeared, it really doesn't look mountain lion-size to me.But that's just my opinion.

classclown 8 years ago

Also that cat has an awful lot of hair for a mountain lion.

RedwoodCoast 8 years ago

And do I see faint stripes on the tail in the first photo?

tangential_reasoners_anonymous 8 years ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

tangential_reasoners_anonymous 8 years ago

Hmm... tandem removal.( Independently, mine didn't seem to contain anything inappropriate.Maybe I forgot to include the smiley. )?:-)

Flap Doodle 8 years ago


Calliope877 8 years ago

Redwood,I agree with your opinion. The black tip on a mountain lion's tail is very distinct.

RedwoodCoast 8 years ago

Bob, I see. No offense taken. That Curtis guy was expressing the most incredulity. And I did round it out by inferring that I may not be correct in my skepticism.But really, I guess it could have been an animatronic sniper magnet placed there by Fish and Game. I'm guessing the guy only shot photos of it, since he isn't in prison for sniping what he thought was a genuine prairie lion.And quit mocking me! I'm not paranoid! I know that's what you're really saying when you claim to not be going after me!

Flap Doodle 8 years ago

Scat is a technical term for animal doo-doos. With DNA analysis you can find a world of information in a single steaming pile.

Cooky_the_Cook 8 years ago

A few years ago I was driving to Kansas City with my girlfriend, and we saw what appeared to be a dead mountain lion on the side of the road. It was just outside of Lawrence on K-10. I even turned around and made another pass to look at it. The color and size was about the same as a dear, but I saw a cat's head both times I looked. It was gone when we got back to town. I don't understand why people are so adamant that these animals don't live around here. Why wouldn't they?

Curtis Lange 8 years ago

Redwood: That is one laaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaarge housecat then...

RedwoodCoast 8 years ago

Well, I just think that people see what they want to see more often than they actually process what they're looking at. To me, this cat's head looks disproportionately large compared to other photos of verified mountain lions that I have seen. But like I said, that is just my opinion.

BigPrune 8 years ago

I wonder what people would think of this guy if he just reported a sighting again, since this wasn't the first time he'd seen one and reported it? You think some might say he is a nut? State Wildlife officials seem to have labeled people with skepticism who have reported mountain lions in the past. So, this guy gets his gun and shoots for peace of mind? What if someone shot a Bigfoot after reporting numerous sightings? Yeah, yeah, it's just Herb with another "Bigfoot" story (roll the eyes). Yeah, yeah, it's just Jimmy with another "mountain lion" story (roll the eyes).

gr 8 years ago

"I do not hunt deer, but deer hunting is a form of population control. There is not an overflow of mountain lions running across the roads and getting hit by automobiles."That's a laugh. Could you explain how shooting bucks control the population?As far as there aren't mountain lions getting hit, how about the global warming approach? We better stop them now before they get worse. Better safe than sorry.And saying killing deer is ok because you eat them and not lions is a pathetic excuse. No one needs to eat deer to survive.

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