Category Archives: Cougars

My long-running discussion on local cougar sightings, which seem to be increasing despite U.S. Fish & Wildlife’s 2011 declaration that Eastern cougars are extinct. Previously they were an endangered species.

Roadside Rambler

Two phone calls, a month apart, reporting separate sightings of a New England phantom, added perspective gleaned from a morning trip to my old stomping grounds, and here I sit, molding it into an outdoors tale for the sports page. So let’s begin with the apparition, otherwise known as mountain lion or catamount or panther […]

Shad, salmon and cougars

Although a few stragglers may yet appear here and there in different watersheds, it’s July and the 2015 Connecticut River anadromous-fish-migration season is, for all intents and purposes, over as usual. A rule of thumb is that once the river temperature stabilizes around 70 degrees Fahrenheit, American shad stop running and start spawning, Atlantic salmon […]

Humdinger

I remember well the wry grin worn by last week’s new crescent moon slouching east and facing west in the southern sky. I now know that sly, waxing sliver of amber energy building toward next week’s full Snow-Moon climax brought with it winter fury … and local suspense. It’s true old witch Mother Nature spared […]

Cougar Spatz

Oh no. Not again. Of course, I should have known better. Doesn’t cougar chatter always draw feedback? Sometimes from faraway places you’d never imagine? Although, really, I can’t claim this one came out of the clear blue. No. In fact, I had given thought of hitting this man with an email after fielding the suspicious […]

No Way?

It never ceases to amaze me how, whenever I write about cougars, emails come flying at me, reporting local sightings or curious discoveries that could be the work of cougars. Last week was no different: first, a deer hunter who explores Mt. Toby’s deepest reaches, then a woman who lives and grew up in Sunderland, […]

Toby Travelers?

The full Wolf Moon curls its lip, displays a stained ivory canine and snarls from high in the cold midnight sky. Uh-oh! Here we go again. Cougars. Yeah, you know — tawny, four legs, long, thick tail, square-ish face with black features along the nose and ears. Everyone who sees one is spellbound in awe […]

Weirdness

Weird: that’s how I’d characterize what’s been happening in my travels since we last met. Then, at other times, same-old, same-old, nothing at all peculiar. Oh well. That’s life. The weirdness started on my ride home from work through The Meadows before midnight a week ago. In a field where I often see deer, yup, […]

Transitions

Don’t let this hot summer weather deceive you. Fall is slipping in. I have felt it for a while now, seen it in the swamps, the sumacs. Just this week I spotted a nice, full, bitter but tasty triangular bunch of blue wild grapes, and the sight and scent immediately transported me back some 30 […]

Cougar Leftovers

Though cold indeed, spring’s in the air, and judging from his morning song, the scarlet cock cardinal knows it. Perhaps he too hears the brook rattling as it snakes through dirty, dwindling streamside ice shelves. Maybe he even realizes that my once-bloated woodshed is emptying, the end near, and my taxes are e-filed. Yes, for […]

Denial Games

I can’t say whether the short introductory note topping an email sent my way this week was fueled by exuberance, defiance or relief. Does it really matter? So let’s just call enthusiastic cougar-researcher Ray Weber triumphant indeed, and leave it at that. OK? “Well,” he wrote in a delayed, victorious response to a five-month-old email […]

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