May 11, 2010
Mountain Lion Range Quickly Expanding Eastward
By Chad Love
From the story in the Greene County, Indiana Daily World:
Indiana State Department of Natural Resources wildlife specialists and State Conservation Officers continue to receive unconfirmed reports of a mountain lion roaming in a rural area of Greene County -- about five to six miles northeast of Bloomfield in Highland Township. "There have been at least three or four (reports) since Friday," said Mike Gregg, a conservation officer from the DNR Division of Law Enforcement, told the Greene County Daily World on Monday. A confirmed image of a mountain lion was caught on an infrared motion-activated camera during the early morning hours of May 1 in a wooded area not far from County Road 450E, according to Scott Johnson, DNR's non-game mammal biologist and member of the DNR Division of Fish and Wildlife's team that assists in reviewing reports having credible evidence.
The photo and a news report was issued by DNR on Friday. Johnson made the determination from photographs take in the area after a preliminary investigation found evidence consistent with mountain lion behavior, including an eviscerated deer carcass buried under a pile of leaves. Johnson says he also got a report of another sighting over the weekend, but has not had a chance to look into it. A couple of mushroom hunters walked up on the mountain lion devouring a deer carcass April 27 and later notified Greg Swanson, a conservation officer from the DNR Division of Law Enforcement, who then contact DNR officials. "They (the mushroom hunters) heard this squalling sound and it was a deer. When they went up to see what was going on, this mountain lion was on it," Gregg stated. "Mountain lions, whenever they kill something like a deer, they actually cover it with leaves and stuff. They call it a cache."
Reaction? Do you think mountain lions will continue to expand eastward or will they eventually run out of enough open country to thrive?