Elk NetworkStudy: Hungry Mountain Lions Likely to Hunt in Inhabited Areas

General | March 19, 2018

A new study indicates that normally recluse mountain lions, when hungry, will not avoid populated areas.

“We have a robust lion population in this state, we have a growing human population in this state, and as a result, our wildlife officers in some areas of Colorado are reporting a pretty significant increase in the number of interactions, whether it’s a human seeing a lion, pets disappearing or lions spotted in residential neighborhoods,” said Mark Porras, a Colorado Parks and Wildlife spokesman, told Summit Daily.

The Journal of Animal Ecology study monitored mountain lions with GPS collars near Boulder and Denver. Movements indicated those animals that went from four days to a week without a kill wandered through neighborhoods looking for food.

“This study contributes to a growing body of evidence indicating that an animal’s energetic state is very important in the decision-making process; animals will make riskier choices when hunger beckons,” said researcher Kevin Blecha.

(Photo source: Colorado Parks and Wildlife)