U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service declares eastern cougar extinct

Eastern cougar extinct_134113


(MEDIA GENERAL) – The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced Tuesday, June 16, 2015 it has declared the eastern cougar extinct and will push for its removal from U.S. Endangered Special Act protections.

According to the FWS’ Mark McCollough, the eastern cougar often was referred to as the “ghost cat,” because no one ever saw it. Now, they believe they know why: they believe the big cat has been extinct since the 1930s.

The FWS says the last known eastern cougars were spotted in the 1930s, and both were killed. One was killed by a hunter in Maine in 1938. Before that, one was found dead in New Brunswick, Canada, in 1932.

The FWS cites multiple reasons for why the eastern cougar died off, namely they were over-hunted and lost their territory. The eastern cougar population first started to drop in the 19th century, when Europeans arrived and killed the cats to protect their livestock. Heavy deforestation also limited the eastern cougar’s territory and drove off the cat’s main prey: white-tailed deer.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

SPONSORED: Saving the Planet in :60

SPONSORED: Avoid idling your car

SPONSORED: Keeping cool and saving the planet

SPONSORED: Taking public transit to fight climate change

SPONSORED: How changing your air filter can save the planet (and save you money)

Tracking the Coronavirus

Coronavirus Cases Tracker

Latest Central Texas COVID-19 Cases

More Coronavirus Live Blogs

Trending Stories

Don't Miss