The Cougar, Puma, Mountain Lion, Panther, or Catamount (Felis concolor) is a fierce cat that lives deep in deciduous forests, rain forests, grasslands, and deserts of North America and South America. These solitary cats can purr but cannot roar. Very athletic, these cats are excellent jumpers, climbers and swimmers.
Cougars have a life span of about 8 years. There are many subspecies of cougar. Cougars are an endangered species due to loss of habitat and over-hunting by man.
Anatomy: The cougar has keen eyesight and good hearing. It has a small head, big ears, powerful jaws, long, pointed canine teeth, and sharp, retractable claws on each foot. The brown eyes have circular pupils. These powerful cats are up to 6 feet (1.8 m) long, plus a long tail that is 2-3 ft (60-90 cm) long. It weighs up to 200 pounds (90 kg). The young have a spotted coat, but become solid tan to gray-brown at six months of age.
Diet: The cougar is a carnivore (a meat-eater). It is a fast, solitary hunter that hunts both during the day and at night. It eats deer, wild hogs, sheep, moose, elk, rabbits, hares, rodents (like beavers), raccoons, some birds, and livestock. Cougars stalk their prey and then ambush it by leaping from the ground or from a tree. They kill large animals by pouncing on the back and breaking the neck. They bury large prey with leaves and twigs to hide the carcass from other animals until they are able to finish eating it.