Feds Ready to Declare Eastern Cougars Extinct - NECN


The latest news from around the state

Feds Ready to Declare Eastern Cougars Extinct



    Feds Ready to Declare Eastern Cougars Extinct
    Getty Images
    Roaring Cougar

    The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service says it's proposing removing the eastern cougar from the endangered species list because it's likely been extinct for at least 70 years.

    Martin Miller, northeast region chief for endangered species, said Tuesday that people have seen cougars - also known as mountain lions - in the eastern U.S.

    But he says those aren't the eastern cougar subspecies. Instead, they're believed to be migrating western mountain lions, Florida panthers or captive animals that were released.

    The eastern cougar subspecies was listed as endangered in 1973. Most of them disappeared in the 1800s as European settlers killed them and as habitat and prey changed. The last records of eastern cougars are believed to be in Maine in 1938 and in New Brunswick, Canada, in 1932. 

    For up-to-the-minute news and weather, be sure to follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook. Sign up for our new breaking news email alerts by clicking here and download our free apps here.