Monday, August 9, 2010

Maine Mountain Lion?

Maine Bobcat, Mountain Lion or some strange yet to be identified hybrid? The two photos below depict a Bobcat and a Mountain Lion. In examining the two photos and comparing them to both my original and enlarged game camera picture you can begin to see why many hunters swear they have sighted Mountain Lions in the Maine woods. At quick glance, the coloration, movements and even many physical attributes of these feline predators are similar. A closer examination, however, reveals a number of differences including tail length, spotted coat and size . . . look closely and make your own decision . . . Bobcat or Mountain Lion!

Want to Find a Maine Mt. Lion? Read Hiking for Maine Mt. Lions

Bobcat Photo
Mountain Lion Photo

Original Game Camera Photo
Enlarged Game Camera Photo

40 comments:

  1. There is quite a resemblance. I can honestly see the confusion.

    Whitetail Woods Blog / Muzzleloader Testing

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  2. Some lady here in VT claimed she saw a catamount recently. Had a pic that looked like a bobcat. Who knows. Hybrids??? Hmmmm.. Interesting..

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  3. Bobcat with a reddish summer coat. The white patches are unmistakeable.

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  4. Oh wow…something else for me to worry about on the fishing trail. I think I have more chance of getting eaten by a mountain lion more than anything else. Great find on the photo…I must have looked at this thing for over an hour.

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  5. thomas martin2/12/11, 8:50 AM

    I saw a moutain lion in broad daylight in an open field in Acworth New Hampshire in NOV. 2009. Myself and a friend were on our way back to our hunting camp after checking in his deer in Alstead.While driving up a steep winding paved road at about 9:30 A.M. on a beautiful sunny sunday morning I looked out the right side up into a steep mowed rolling field with two prominent fruit trees in the middle of it,and the woodline about 60 yards beyond.I saw the cougar broadside probably 60 to 70 yards away from our position just casually strolling along just about to go behind the fruit trees.Now let there be no mistake that when you see this creature with high muscular shoulders and a tail as long as its body you know what it is.I exclaimed to my friend "what the hell is that?" His response was "I,t looks like a giant blankn cat!" To this I responded "It,s a moutain lion!" It bears mentioning that I had made no effort to influence his comment about the "giant cat" which is already what i knew I was looking at.

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    1. May 9 2012. Friends are posting a photo on FB of a mountain lion dragging a deer. Purportedly from a trail cam in Langdon or Acworth NH. Googled, and all I found was this posting, no more info anywhere.

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    2. ALNorth, Interesting report. Please keep me posted. I hadn't heard of that sighting. Keep up the digging and thanks for stopping by and commenting!

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    3. My son Gray says there was a picture in the news this week of a mountain lion dragging a full grown buck across the road near the Acworth - Lempster NH line. Same cat?

      Meredith Tenney
      Acworth, NH

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    4. Just found this about the same photo...looks like an Urgan Legend and it apparently happened in Texas. http://barringer.bowhuntingroad.com/2011/11/25/mountain-lion-and-buck-urban-legend/

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    5. AHHHHH HA! That looks like it is a LOOOOONG way from NH! Thanks for posting Kate!

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  6. I saw, what I believe to be, an immature mountain lion today outside of penobscot county, Maine. After researching online different photos, I am certain.

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  7. Group,

    The search continues but despite several deployed game cameras and a large bait pile on the back of my property, I have still yet to photograph a Maine Mt. Lion!

    Interesting that on my recent trip to Florida Osceola hunting I had my turkey decoy stalked by a Florida panther!

    Mainers if you think you are seeing a Mt. Lion I encourage you to set a game camera out in the spot. Just make sure the "cat" you photograph has a long tail!

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  8. I have seen print poff and photos of one in Maine. I've been told the warden service will not confirm the sightings because of "paperwork and costs" associated with onfirming the existance of moutian lions in states the are no longer supposed to be in. There are wovles here as well. For some reason neither species goes through the Canadian customs check points...

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  9. 7/22/2011, 19:40 Hrs. Byron, Maine. Aprox. 2 miles north of Coos Canyon crossing the road (Route 17) to the Swift river Spotted what at first I thought was a Bobcat then REALIZED IT was much bigger than a Bobcat, I would guess about the size of my German Shepherd. Tail was 1/2 the size of the cat's body. We were very excited to see this rarity.

    Tom Bordeau & family. Rumford, Maine

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  10. Go into Nesowdahunk Campground off the Telos Road and in the store they have a picture taken by one of the seasonals there of a mountain lion walking along the shore.They ARE here and if you look at the mammels of Maine on the IF&W website,they are now listed as a Maine animal.Also,the Red Roof store has a picture on their wall that someone in Monmouth got of a cougar aka mountain lion on their game camera..there is no doubt .I looked at your "cat" in pictures and there is no doubt what type of "cat" it was.the ears and tail gave it away:-)

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  11. Tom and Anon. Thanks a ton for taking the time to comment. It is much appreciated.

    Interesting stories. If anyone happens to have a photo of the Nesowahunk Mt lion I would love to see it.

    Perhaps next time you are there snap a digital photo of the picture and send it to me?

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  12. I beleive as well as the comment on 6/2/11 8:32 PM that I saw a mt lion possibly in penobscot county on rt 159 headed into baxter...it crossed the road in front of my car.. wish I had had my camera ready!!

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  13. I know of several people in Somerville around Rt. 105 that swear they have seen one. I keep saying you gotta get the picture! I do know of a confirmed sighting in Cape Elizabeth. A ranger friend tells me that Maine won't admit they exist because then they wold have to protect them and the large habitat. Actually there was a photo in the Kennebec Journal in the 80s where a woman photographed one in her back yard in Farmingdale.

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    1. Kilgor, I have a pending blog post that provides a map to all of the Mt. Lion sightings in the past several years. THere have been many sightings both confirmed and unconfirmed. My post will provide links to hiking areas where a lucky backpacker might chance to see one. The post should be up before the end of the month.

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  14. There are a lot of bobcats around the Washington Waldoboro area. David Spahr

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    1. Kilgor, There are a lot of bobcats around everywhere. They are smart and secretive and not an animal that is frequently seen. I had a HUGE cat of 30 lbs out in back of the house that I had seen on my game camera. That cat now rest on a log in my basement, the product of a thrilling predator hunt gone right and year long taxidermy project.

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  15. At about 11:25 this morning I was heading home and as I was passing a telephone pole... in the middle, before the next pole crossed a mountain lion. As I stopped my car i was right next to it as it entered the woods over a down tree... I have an 85lb lab mix and it was bigger than he is... I was probably 15 feet from it initially as it was walking briskly away... It was solid in color a med to darkish brown and it's tail was probably 2.5-3 feet long... I was shaking in disbelief... when it initially crossed the road, it did so in two leaps... it leaped from the right landing right near the center yellow line and then with one more leap it was on the woodline... It was absolutly amazing! It was paralleling power lines by probably 50 yards out... This was in Wells, ME

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  16. They are around. We are in central Massachusetts and had a mountain lion in the backyard this morning. NO mistaking the "giant cat" and 4 foot long tail. For all you naysayers, I have it on video! Amazing animal, quite a site.

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    1. Anon . . . video link required. No teasing allowed on my blog. :)

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  17. Not sure if you did get that link to the Acworth cat dragging the deer.. Here it is.. https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=199536070168159&set=a.111708112284289.14759.100003353034487&type=1 I got here by googling as well.

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    1. Bodynsoil, I did manage to get the cat picture but a few other internet aficionados have determined that the cat dragging the deer by the feeder pic was really taken in Texas.

      More at this link: http://barringer.bowhuntingroad.com/2011/11/25/mountain-lion-and-buck-urban-legend/

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting. I checked out your website and now have an overwhelming desire to begin weening myself off my love of corned beef hash, PBR and deep fat friend bacon wrapped cheese dogs! Take Care!

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  18. Me and my mother saw a mountain lion this noon time. He was about 20 feet from me on her porch, this took place in oxford county maine. There is no doubt what I saw, I would say he was atleast 100lbs and the tail was about 30 inches long. I was really shocked when he looked my way, I expected a snout like a dog, but what I saw was a mountain lions face. He didn't walk like a dog and he wasn't strolling along but wasn't in a great hurry either, a steady gate I would call it, right down the center of her dooryard. He would make 3 of my pitbull and she is about 50lbs, his back was probably about 30-36 inches high, tail long and bent up towards the end, careful stepping but steady. This was a site to see, one I will never forget or doubt and like most I didn't have a camera, honestly it wouldn't have done much good if I had the show was about 15seconds long, not enough time to even get it started. No one will ever convince me there aren't mountain lions in maine after 50yrs of living here I can finally say I saw one.

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  19. Rabid Outdoorsman... I have spent years hiking alone on the high peaks of Vermont. After a day full of researching the infamous mountain lion, I came across this discussion. I am actually a resident of Stowe, VT. Early this morning my 35 pound mutt and I came across a stealthy and myserious (large) animal just below the treeline on Hunger Mountain. While it made very little noise, myself and the pup could sense this powerful animal, whether it was a bear, coyote, or as many of my friends/family have suggested: a mountain lion. Not only did it approach us quietly, it also followed us briefly, twice - once on climb up, and once on the climb down. I did not get catch a glimpse of the animal, but could tell by the behvior of my dog (who is an incredibly calm and good-natured pup) that we were being threated in some way. Any thoughts? An animal protecting it's young? A hungry carnivore? A curious cat? I would love to hear what you have to say.

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    1. AMW, Sorry so long in responding, have been tied up first with Vacation and now the reflective fall-out of taking time away from work.

      That is a tough call on what it could have likely been without additional information. An onsite investigation looking for tracks and/or scat the next day or a few days later could indicate exactly what it was. If you were VERY curious a game camera and a dead chicken wired to a tree would probably provide you with plenty of pictures that would clearly indicate any carnivores that were in the immediate area. (Of course, check your state rules and regulations related to what I just said above.)

      My dog though a calm and gentle lab will growl and go nuts if she smells even a house cat so sometimes they are good indicators and sometime not . . .

      Thanks for commenting!

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  20. Just last night I saw a black bobcat crossing Route 4. I live in Sanford, thats right, Southern Maine. At first I didn't know what to think. It looked and moved like a cougar sort of. Lean, black hair, really long tail. First one I have ever seen and surprised to see one in town.

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    1. Black and long tail . . . to me that sounds like a panther. :)

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    2. I was directed to this site from a Google search trying to figure out what a large black cat could be. While driving home through Greene/Sabattus, I just had a black cat leap across the road in front of me. When I say leap, I mean LEAP. In two jumps. I slammed on my breaks and pulled over. The cat was sitting in the tall grass by the road, it's tail was incredibly long and thick. I have an 82 lb dog and the cat was about as tall as my dog, but it was much sleaker. So my question is - was the panther comment a joke or are there really panthers in Maine? Or is it probable that it was a black bobcat? It was amazing.

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  21. Thanks for this post! Really interesting. :D

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    1. Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

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  22. I'm no zoologist nor do I work at the local portland vet center, but I wouldn't be surprised if that is an actual mountain lion. Before man came along, they were literally everywhere. What we have here could be evidence that they are starting to repopulate some former territories.

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    1. Hi Damian thanks for commenting! It certainly has been proven on several occasions that Mt. Lions are here in the state . . . it just has never been proven if these are escapees from "private" preserves or if they are actual immigrants! I guess eventually we will have an answer as the shear number of game cameras in the wilds will eventually catch some great pictures!

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  23. weather010893/13/13, 11:19 AM

    Those pictures have been sized so that both cats are about the same size range.

    Bobcats rarely exceed 40 lbs. Mountain lions are 85 plus pounds. Typical adult
    over 100. If you have been in the woods and seen bobcats, its hard to make a mistake
    when you encounter a mountain lion.

    The long tail is one quick feature present on a mountain lion. The white spots
    on the back of the ears of a bobcat are another. How can someone say its "easy"
    to make a mistake between a 40 lb animal and one over 100? Silly.

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  24. I was traveling on Route 26 North in South Paris when I spotted a large cat crossing the road about 30 feet ahead of me. It came down over the banking from my left and went into a ditch on my right. I pulled over to get a closer look but lost it in the tree line. It's weight was around 100lbs, color was tannish/brown. I'm a believer of cats in Maine.

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  25. Over the last 20+ years, multiple videos & Kodak films, before 1990, from outdoorsmen-hunters, who were sure of seeing wild mountain lions in several Maine areas. Of 27 videos / kodak photos sent to us in West Virginia, professional trackers, retired Biologist and Zoologist have identified 16 as pumas. Videos came from retired ME Biologist who caught cougar on Allagash Wilderness waterway, 2 photos along Acoostook River, southern end of Cross Lake in 1990, photo by old Long Pond trapper, "near Paris, ME resident photographed 5" wide cougar snow tracks in 1997", Sebago Lake Resident 1991 photos & cougar crossing frozen lake nr Oxford, ME identified by Prof. Harold Hitchcock....my e-mail: epuma@frontier.com.

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  26. Was over at my wife's Aunts house today. Last week she saw a large tawny colored cat with long tail. She knows her animals and this was no bobcat or lynx. This was in Harrison, Me.

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