but heck i have paw print photo from what 4 years ago. just bc you don't know how find them does not mean they don't exist here.
Now, now, no need for that.
We've been over this track. I was up there looking at them in situ. John and Hank looked at it. It's canine. Your average cougar print is 3.5" x 3". Smaller than the palm of your hand.
I had remote cams up at Minnewaska and the Preserve for three years: no pics, no tracks, no scat, no deer kills with cougar signatures. Pics and tracks of everything else.
A dozen reports in the Clove over five years. I walk that creek four/five times a week once it snows and freezes over. Your average cougar leaves between 10,000 - 20,000 prints every day
. I found one den, cat scat, and some cat tracks in the Clove in five years: bobcat.
The foundation (including cougar researchers with decades of experience) ran sanctioned cam surveys in seven states. We spent tens of thousands of hours on the ground following up reports. The foundation solicited pics of reported cougars from Nova Scotia to Mississippi for twelves years. We got twelve years of pics of bobcats, housecats, dogs and deer, and track pics of canines and bears. We got hoax pics from cougars taken out west.
Not one piece of cougar evidence in twelve years. And not just us. No state wildlife agencies, no researchers studying bobcats, coyotes, bear, fisher or deer have found any collateral cougar evidence, either. Two NY state agencies and two universities collaborated on a massive Daks carnivore study using cams and track traps at 52 locations. They analyzed 660 scats. No cougars.
The Smithsonian has run an exhaustive cam-study along the AT in Virginia for three years. No cougars.
Wisconsin hadn't had a confirmation in a century. They've IDd four individual males through DNA in three years matched to DNA from the Black Hills.
15 are hit every year in southern Florida.
You don't need to be able to find them. That's the point, wherever they live, even in the lowest densities, they appear without anyone having to look for them: hit, shot, treed, wandering into towns and cities, photographed on random remote cams (300,000 sold commercially every year; they're in every hunter's backyard or favorite hunting spot) and on cell phones from tree stands. http://www.cougarnet.org/totalus.html
One confirmation east of Michigan and north of Georgia in eleven years proves only that there was one cat here.
I wish you much luck, gentlemen. Please give a head's up should you find anything.