The Michigan Wildlife Conservancy, a citizen group that restores Michigan wildlife habitats, has recently released a photo taken on June 1st of a cougar walking on a trail in Marquette County. The cougar sightings seem to be occurring more often as recently the DNR has just confirmed the 16th sighting since 2008, two of which being from this year.
There has not been an established cougar population in Michigan since the turn of the 20th century. Although the recent photos and sightings may suggest an established cougar population in Michigan, the Michigan DNR believes that the cougars are passing through the area looking for territories to reside in.
Cougars are known to wander distances as far as from the Dakotas to Connecticut, so to verify a breeding population the DNR is requiring a sighting of a cougar kitten. Cougar kittens cannot walk the long distances that the adults can, making it more likely that there is a true population.
To find out more about the cougars’ presence in Michigan, visit http://greatlakesecho.org/2012/07/19/theres-a-cougar-in-marquette-county-michigan/