These mountain lion facts and statistics may surprise you.
While Colorado, Arizona, Wyoming and Montana residents are well-aware that they live in mountain lion habitat, few Americans realize that nearly half of America has had official mountain lion sightings.
Many humans fear these animals–and rightfully so. However, so long as you understand Mountain Lion Behavior, the likelihood is you and nobody you love will ever be the victim of a mountain lion attack.
Thankfully, many people are educating themselves on the facts about mountain lions. With education comes acceptance and realization that these large cats are essential to many ecosystems.
From when the Wild West was first being tamed through the early 60s, mountain lions were considered bountied preys, which means hunters were offered cash by the government for every mountain lion head they brought.
Thankfully, these animals are now protected. However, humans continue encroaching upon mountain lion habitat and range, which causes these cats to more often infringe upon human land and personal property.
Glacier National Park is prime mountain lion habitat. This land is protected to ensure that mountain lions will always roam free in this range of country.
Mountain Lion Habitat & Range
Male mountain lions can have a territory as large as 100 square miles. Typically, females have a territory of approximately 30-60 square miles.
Unfortunately, human growth has limited the range and habitat of mountain lions, forcing many to coexist with each other.
An interesting fact about mountain lions is the diverse range of habitats they can live in:
- Elevation – Mountain lions can live at both sea level and up to 10,000 feet
- Environment – Mountain lion habitat can include deserts, such as Arizona, to rainforest like conditions, such as the region around Lake McDonald & Bowman Lake in Glacier
Adult mountain lions generally are a solid red or brown color. This permits them great camouflage while stalking their prey in the desert, through mountainous regions and in forests.
Its ears and tails generally have black tips.
Full grown male mountain lions can weigh upwards of 150 pounds and be 8 feet long, including tail. Females are smaller and weigh around 80 pounds.
Mountain lion kittens look very different from adults. They generally have black and brown spots covering their bodies and rings around their tails. These designs disappear as they age.
What Do Mountain Lions Eat
The mountain lion diet does not consist of human meat. However, mountain lions have attacked small children when left unattended in mountain lion habitat, which is why you must always keep your child close by when hiking in mountain lion range.
Mountain lions attack by ambushing their prey. They either suffocate or break their prey’s neck. They prefer big game, but will eat smaller mammals if circumstances permit.
The mountain lion diet includes:
- Big horn sheep
More Interesting Mountain Lion Facts
Need more mountain lion facts & information? Here you go:
- Lifespan – Cougars live for approximately 8-10 years in the wild and can live up to 20 years in captivity
- Lifestyle – Mountain lions live solitary lives. A mother mountain lion and its kittens live together until the kitten is old enough to survive on its own
- Breeding Habits – Female mountain lions breed for their first time between 1.5 and 3
- Mountain Lion Kitten Lifespan – Kittens have it rough–only 1 in 6 survive
- Mountain Lion Human Attacks – You have a better chance of being struck by lightening than dying because of a mountain lion attack