This powerful predator roams the Americas, where it is also known as a puma, cougar, and catamount. This big cat of many names is also found in many habitats, from Florida swamps to Canadian forests.
Mountain lions like to prey on deer, though they also eat smaller animals such as coyotes, porcupines, and raccoons. They usually hunt at night or during the twilight hours of dawn and dusk. These cats employ a blend of stealth and power, stalking their prey until an opportunity arrives to pounce, then going for the back of the neck with a fatal bite. They will hide large carcasses and feed on them for several days.
Mountain Lions live 8-13
years and are very
protective of their territory sometimes establishing a territory of more than
300 square miles.
Mountain lions require a lot of room—only a few cats
can survive in a 30-square-mile (78-square-kilometer)
range. They are solitary and shy animals, seldom seen
by humans. Mountain lions once roamed nearly all of the
United States. They were prized by hunters and despised
by farmers and ranchers who suffered livestock losses at their hands. Subsequently, by the dawn of the 20th century, mountain lions were eliminated from nearly all of their range in the Midwest and Eastern U.S.
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Females mature between one-and-a-half to three years of age. They typically average one litter every two to three years throughout their lives. It takes about 91 days for the babies to be born. Young adults leave their mother to attempt to establish their own territory at around two years of age and sometimes earlier; males tend to leave sooner.
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