The cougar (Puma concolor), also known as mountain lion, is the largest felid (80 to 165 pounds adult) in North America. As part of predator removal campaigns in the early 1900s, cougars and wolves were killed throughout the lower 48 states, including national parks. Wolves (Canis lupus) were eradicated and, although cougars were probably eliminated from Yellowstone, the species survived in the West because of its cryptic nature and preference for rocky, rugged territory where the cats are difficult to track. Eventually the survivors re-established themselves in Yellowstone.

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Updated 8/18/10