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Grizzly bears, black bears, wolves, coyotes, cougars/ mountain lions,bobcats, wolverines, lynx, foxes, fishers and martens are the suite of carnivores that originally inhabited North America after the Pleistocene extinctions. This site invites research, commentary, point/counterpoint on that suite of native animals (predator and prey) that inhabited The Americas circa 1500-at the initial point of European exploration and subsequent colonization. Landscape ecology, journal accounts of explorers and frontiersmen, genetic evaluations of museum animals, peer reviewed 20th and 21st century research on various aspects of our "Wild America" as well as subjective commentary from expert and layman alike. All of the above being revealed and discussed with the underlying goal of one day seeing our Continent rewilded.....Where big enough swaths of open space exist with connective corridors to other large forest, meadow, mountain, valley, prairie, desert and chaparral wildlands.....Thereby enabling all of our historic fauna, including man, to live in a sustainable and healthy environment. - Blogger Rick

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Thursday, March 15, 2012

If we keep our Florida Pumas "boxed" into the Southern half of the State and do not expand their critical habitat to the North and West, domestic cattle will end up in their diet more and more...........Our "Ghost Cats" need more room to roam so as to be able to stalk and kill deer and not livestock

Florida panther attacks on livestock more than double
Attacks by Florida panthers on livestock more than doubled last year, as the endangered cats feasted on backyard goats, chickens and other animals in suburban Naples, according to a report released Thursday.

Florida Pumas confined to Southwestern part of the State

Attacks on livestock rose to 29, up from 12 the previous year, according to the annual report on the panther from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and National Park Service. The vast majority of attacks involved backyard livestock in Collier County's Golden Gate Estates area. Three of the attacks involved calves on cattle ranches. An unconfirmed attack involved a horse in Parkland in Broward County, which was not counted in the total.

Biologists attributed the increase to the expansion of neighborhoods into panther habitat, a greater willingness to report attacks and possibly the activities of a single female panther and her offspring. The panther has also experienced growth in numbers over the past 30 years, with an estimated population of 100-160.

"The exact reason for the increase is unknown, but we speculate that a family group -- a mother and her three kittens -- took advantage of plentiful, unsecured hobby livestock/pets in a Naples neighborhood," said biologist Mark Lotz of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. "Another potential reason is that our outreach efforts have been effective and more people are reporting depredations now."

There has never been a documented attack by a Florida panther on a human being, although the panther's western cousin the cougar – which is essentially the same species – has attacked and killed people.Ben Nottingham, manager of the Florida Panther National Wildlife Refuge, said the attacks show the need for people to secure livestock in panther-proof enclosures."Doing so will prevent loss of pets/animals, prevent attracting panthers and  promote public safety," he said.

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