MICHIGAN CITIZENS for COUGAR RECOGNITION
Sightings
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UFO = "Unidentified Furry Object"


I have seen moose, bear, bobcat, etc., but nothing thrilled me like the sight of that cat." R. Chatel, Oscoda, 1957 Cougar Sighting

"I have had some incredible experiences during all of the many hours I have spent in the woods but this was one of the finest." Jeffrey Bonin, North Muskegon, 1988 Cougar Sighting

"This animal was spectacular and both my wife and I were left with a feeling that we had been graced with unbelievably good fortune to see one of these magnificent beasts." Thomas Noren, M.D., Escanaba, 1986 Cougar Sighting

"As a hunter and animal lover it was the most startling experiance I have ever had anywhere - woods, on the road - water, etc. It had caught a rabbit and had it held down with its paw while I was standing watching him. He froze like a statue. It was outstanding to witness at about 12 to 15 feet away. I once in a life time." - Warren Meyer, 2002 Cheboygan Cougar Sighting

"This experience has to be one of the most exciting of my life. The eyes of the cat rimmed in black seemed almost hypnotic. When he faced me, they stood out over all the rest of his features, and surroundings. It's really hard to explain how magnificent this animal was. No other outdoor experience I've every had will come close to it." - Vernon Schwartz, Prescott, 1996 Cougar Sighting



People always ask, "So where do cougars hang out?" The answer is simple - find the whitetail deer. Cougars routinely follow deer and other prey animals. An elusive animal, it is unusual to find them in the middle of an open field. Most often they will be observed on the edges of treelines, roadways, railroad tracks, hiking/biking paths, and power line easements where they will wait and stalk prey. Like any animal, including humans, cougars will travel the path of least resistance whenever possible, using roadways, trails, railroad tracks, and open easement land to travel distances.


It is interesting to note that, in Michigan, there have been 8 sightings near and/or on airports and 15 near and/or on golf courses - perhaps they like the soft grass. There have been 7 Michigan sightings in and/or near gravel pits/quarries - a potty break, perhaps. While these sighting trends may offer insight into cougar location and travel, it is just as reasonable that the site descriptions are given by people reporting because that is the easiest way to relay location. For example, instead of saying, "I saw the cougar down past Charlie Smith's house" which is very vague to someone unfamiliar with the area, the observer would say, "I saw the cougar near the golf course north of the gravel pit just before the airport road".


OVER 1,800 SIGHTINGS BY COUNTY
SIGHTINGS AROUND MICHIGAN TRAILS/PARKS
DNR POSITION ON POSTING TRAILS
EASTERN PUMA RESEARCH NETWORK - Sightings/Reports/Photos from Maryland, Virginia, Pennsylvania Areas
EMMETT COUNTY SIGHTINGS REPORT/MAP (44 sightings)
MICHIGAN COUGAR EVIDENCE
ILLINOIS COUGAR KILLED 200 MILES FROM MICHIGAN LINE
KALEVA HARDWARE STORE
When she owned the Kaleva Hardware Store, Pam Benson posted a map at her store in Kaleva in Manistee. There were over 113 cougar sightings marked on the store map at the last count. Here is an example of the map at one time.

ROTHBURY EXPRESS FEED STORE
Dennis Payne, Shelby, and his son Jeff saw a cougar about two years ago near Marshville Dam. He now posts a map at the Express Feed Store in Rothbury for visitors to post their sightings. This is a copy of the map as of October 1, 2006.

MICHIGAN COUGAR LIVESTOCK ATTACKS
COUGAR MEDIA ATTENTION
MICHIGAN WILDLIFE CONSERVANCY'S CONFIRMED COUGAR COUNTIES
MICHIGAN WILDLIFE CONSERVANCY COUGAR MILESTONES


MONROE COUNTY VIDEO
Watch the Video

NORTHERN MICHIGAN JOURNAL, MAY/JUNE, 2003 - Five Pages of Sightings
SAVE THE COUGAR.ORG
Save The Cougar.org was developed to keep Michigan residents current on cougar sightings and evidence. While the MCCR site is designed for public information, savethecougar.org is designed to keep a running tally of current Michigan sightings. Please visit their site for recent updates.

SLEEPING BEAR DUNES
SLEEPING BEAR DUNES
WOOD TV COUGAR FORUM
In the Spring, 2006, WOOD TV aired a story about cougars attacking livestock in Battle Creek. They posted a forum for public comment and it is the largest number of responses they've received from any public forum. There were over 30 pages at last count with 6-7 posts per page.


OTHER SIGHTINGS COLLECTED

Ed Klima of Crystal Falls begins to record cougar sightings in the Upper Peninsula in 1970. He recorded 360+ sightings while collecting.
Former DNR Deputy Director Frank Opolka observed a cougar near Cornell in Delta County in 1966. A plaster cast was made of the track the next day and was later verified as that of a "large cat" by University of Michigan biologists.
Retired DNR Forester Mike Zuidema saw a cougar in 1981 and began collecting sighting reports from primarily the Central Upper Pensinsula. To-date, he has collected 975+ reports. See the Kittens page for detailed cub sighting list prepared by Zuidema.


If you want to request government information pertaining to cougar sightings, attacks, and or possession, you may request that information under the Freedom of Information Act. When applying, be sure to be as specific as possible to reduce search time and costs. FOIA Application


DENISE NOBLE