The cougar, also known as the mountain lion or panther, ranges throughout the wilderness areas of western America and Canada. About 30 to 50 of the rare and endangered Eastern cougars (subspecies called Florida panthers) survive in the Florida Everglades. They once roamed our Blue Ridge Mountains. See our cougars in the Wildlife Habitats.
The cougar is a large, slender yellowish-brown cat with a white muzzle, and eyebrows and a dark black line around its eyes. It is six to eight and a half feet in length and it stands two to two and a half feet at the shoulder.
Cougars roam as much as 100 miles in a circular pattern, leaving areas of their territory undisturbed for days at a time. They are formidable hunters, with prey varying from rodents to fully grown deer. Eastern cougars are also known to catch fish. After a three month gestation period, a mother panther will give birth to two or three cubs. They are born with blue eyes and heavy black spots that eventually fade. They will spend up to two years with their mothers learning how to hunt and they will live 10 to 12 years.
To learn more about cougars, attend an Animal Encounter daily April-October.
Looking for a special gift? Adopt one of our Cougars.