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Topics Include Front Range Human-Cougar Interactions
Denver, Colo. – Join WildEarth Guardians, Sierra Club, Cougar Fund, and Colorado Mountain Club in July and August as we host four evenings of presentations entitled: “Cougars of Colorado.” Researchers with the Colorado Parks and Wildlife will also be on hand to present their cutting-edge research of big cat behavior on the Front Range. The events will be held in Golden, Evergreen, Boulder, and Estes Park.
“Cougars contribute to the richness and complexity of Colorado’s ecosystems,”
said Wendy Keefover, wildlife advocate for WildEarth Guardians, and co-presenter. “By creating awareness and understanding of these native cats, we can promote common sense precautions to eliminate potential human-lion conflicts.”
Lead by Mat Alldredge, PhD, Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW) conducts research on human and cougar interactions. CPW biologists will present results from their Front Range study. The audience will be surprised to learn how proximate we live to cougars.
Colorado’s rugged foothills, canyons, and mountainous backdrop provide excellent habitat for cougars, also commonly called pumas, mountain lions, or panthers. These large, golden cats, shy and unsocial by nature, prefer living around rugged terrain that is suitable for ambushing prey, such as deer and elk. While cougars are thought of as wilderness creatures, they are highly adaptable and can even flourish in suburban habitats.
The presentations include what is necessary to maintain cougars’ long-term conservation, including what the state has done to protect breeding females and their kittens. Kittens are totally dependent upon their mothers for their first nine months, and typically spend between ten and 24 months learning survival skills from their mother.
Keefover added that as more Coloradans move into cougar habitat in the coming years, public education will be key to maintaining tolerance for the species, and for ensuring their conservation.
“The better that people understand this magnificent animal, the more likely it is that we will continue to have support for protecting the places that it needs to survive over the long term,” she said.
The Cougars of Colorado events:
Monday, July 30, 7 pm
Tuesday, July 31, 7 pm
Tuesday, August 21, 7 pm