Nebraska’s Proposed Puma Hunt Threatens the Species’ Eastward Expansion

The Jaguar

Ridiculously, the state of Nebraska wants to open a hunt on its estimated 59 pumas. Attention Grabber by Valerie. CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Pumas (AKA mountain lions, cougars, and Puma concolor) are adaptable cats that live throughout western North America and much of South America. But a large part of their range has been lost. Pumas have been extirpated from the eastern two-thirds of North America, largely due to indiscriminate hunting and targeted extermination efforts by the United States government.

Thanks to more responsible management practices in the western US since 1965, pumas are beginning to recolonize some of their former range. They are slowly moving east, with small breeding populations now present in states like Nebraska. But their recovery in that state is threatened by a senseless hunting proposal.

Nebraska’s Game and Parks Commission wants to allow 20 percent of its Pine Ridge puma population, which numbers only 59…

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