Eastern Cougar: Historic Accounts, Scientific Investigations, and New Evidence

Overview

  • The first book to cover the history and current status of the mysterious big cat
  • Investigates the controversial question of whether wild cougars still inhabit the eastern United States
  • Collects written accounts from the settlers who first encountered the animals and includes contributions from leading figures in the field

When European settlers first reached the shores of North America, eastern cougars were ...

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Eastern Cougar: Historic Accounts, Scientific Investigations, New Evidence

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Overview

  • The first book to cover the history and current status of the mysterious big cat
  • Investigates the controversial question of whether wild cougars still inhabit the eastern United States
  • Collects written accounts from the settlers who first encountered the animals and includes contributions from leading figures in the field

When European settlers first reached the shores of North America, eastern cougars were plentiful, ranging up and down the coast of the present-day United States. By the beginning of the twentieth century, they had been almost entirely wiped out, victims of the same rapacity and ignorance that decimated wolf and bison numbers elsewhere in the country. Today, the continued existence of wild cougars remains hotly disputed, as do proposals to reintroduce cougars to the East. This groundbreaking anthology brings together accounts of early settlers and explorers, presents pro and con arguments on the wild cougar question, and examines the social and environmental implications of reintroduction. More than just a study of a single animal, this fascinating anthology probes America's troubled history with large predators and makes a vital contribution to the wildlife management debates of today.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780811732185
  • Publisher: Stackpole Books
  • Publication date: 8/10/2005
  • Pages: 246
  • Product dimensions: 8.94 (w) x 11.00 (h) x 0.68 (d)

Meet the Author

Jerry Roberts is a writer, editor, and critic who has written or contributed to countless books and articles on various topics. He lives in Torrance, California.

Chris Bolgiano is a librarian and freelance writer living in western Virginia. Her work has appeared in the New York Times, Washington Post, and numerous other publications. She is the author of the books Mountain Lion (0-8117-2867-6) and Living in the Appalachian Forest (0-8117-2845-5).

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 11, 2006

    The Eastern Cougar: Historic Accounts, Scientific Investigations, New Evidence

    Read & Reviewed By: Barbara Chaplin, Executive Director, Cougar Quest - Virginia The Eastern Cougar: Historic Accounts, Scientific Investigations, New Evidence (edited by Chris Bogiano and Jerry Roberts, published by Stackpole Books, 2005) provides an astonishing array of historic accounts and scientific evidence, carefully compiled and objectively edited by the authors, to provide a strong probability that cougars survive in small breeding pockets in the east. Cougars (also known as mountain lion, puma, panther, painter, and catamount among other laymen names and `Puma (=Felis) concolour couguar' or `Puma concolor cougar' among scientists) are large, elusive, powerful feline predators supposedly extirpated from eastern United States and Canada prior to 1900. But, cougar reports and evidence continue to surface. The reader does not need an advanced degree in biology, zoology, or any other scientific study to understand, appreciate, and learn from this book. Even the most intimidating article title, 'Genetic Variation, Gene Flow, and Population Identification for North American Pumas' by the premier cougar DNA research expert Melanie Culver, has been written in terms laymen can understand Ms. Culver is able to explain genetics like Carl Sagan explained the universe. Maps (refer specifically to the map of 'Confirmed Cougar Evidence ...' facing chapter 2, 'Reappearance: Where's The Evidence?') and photographs assist the reader in visualizing the animal and where scientifically confirmed field evidence suggests it may be living in the wild. Reproduced in chapter 3, 'Outlook: Can They Come Back?', is the U.S. Department of the Interior's official position on eastern cougars. In a response to a request that the 'Similarity of Appearance' provision of the Endangered Species Act, which protects all cougars in Florida panther territory, be applied to all cougars in the east, a Director stated: '... the Service's position remains that the eastern cougar is extirpated.' and 'Use of the Similarity of Appearance provision ... in the remaining eastern States is [not] justified at this time.' I highly recommend The Eastern Cougar: Historic Accounts, Scientific Investigations, New Evidence - it is a treasure to be read, re-read, and referred to.

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