Cougar sighting in Ontario!!

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TurkeyJohn
 
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Cougar sighting in Ontario!!

Postby TurkeyJohn » May 7th, 2012, 12:11 pm

Hey Folks,

Was in contact this morning with a landowner where i usually hunt and they warned me of a cougar sighting in their back fields.

The report goes that another hunter that hunts the property where I hunt, was set up in a particular field with his son. His son decided to go for a looksee at a couple of adjacent fields on his own. Typically, the turkeys would come out into this field to strut/feed as I've seen many times myself. Well, the son doesn't find a turkey but instead sees a cougar. Apparently close enough he could hear the cat growl. Needless to say, the hunter and his son vacated the woods toute de suite. The son was quite shaken and word is spreading that if you're in this area, to keep an eye out.

Which brings me to my question. I've never hunted with an eye over my shoulder. I've shared the woods with coyotes and have heard stories of bears being in a given area, but I've got to admit, this one has me a little nervous about going back to my hot spot. What precautions should I take or are there any? Would there be any legal ramifications if I'm forced to defend myself? :roll:

I know there are hunters out there that deal with venomous snakes and the like, none here yet. But, wonder if anyone has had experience with these big cats and if there are particular does and don't when hunting in their area.

Does explain perhaps why I've seen fewer turkeys around this given area when in the past, they are alot more plentiful.

Funny that I was just reading in our Ontario Out of Doors magazine, that the Ministry of Natural Resources has finally admitted there are these cats in Ontario.

Any comments would be great and thanks guys,

Happy hunting and keep an eye out.
Hobby.....Is there anything other than turkey hunting??

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Gopherlongbeards
 
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Location: Minneapolis, MN

Re: Cougar sighting in Ontario!!

Postby Gopherlongbeards » May 7th, 2012, 12:37 pm

The black hills has one of the highest density cougar populations in the country. Its pretty common for us to see tracks (always cool when they are OVER the ones you made that AM...) and scat when we're out hunting. Friends I have out there see them walk through the back 40 a couple times a year. I have yet to SEE one while out hunting, but I'm positive many have seen me. One of the more popular calls to lure them in for cougar hunting during the winter is a gobbler in distress call. I wonder how many have snuck in to check out our setups during the spring over the years? I wouldn't worry about it to much. Odds are you will never see the cat again. If you do, give it a wide berth.

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TurkeyJohn
 
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Re: Cougar sighting in Ontario!!

Postby TurkeyJohn » May 7th, 2012, 1:40 pm

Thanks Gopher,

Hope your season went well.

I feel better knowing you hunt with them in your back yard and lived to tell the tale. But, at the same time, concerned because my calls may sound like a gobbler in distress, my wife tells so anyway.

Thanks again, and I'll give them the space they deserve,

TJ
Hobby.....Is there anything other than turkey hunting??

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FyRe610
 
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Re: Cougar sighting in Ontario!!

Postby FyRe610 » May 7th, 2012, 2:48 pm

Ive seen a few game cam pictures of cougars from around the area i live, one of them even had a huge 12 point in its mouth for dinner :cry:
But even with those pictures and stories, i read that their active territory range can exceed 200 miles, so seeing one in a certain spot one day doesn't mean that he/she lives nearby.

I think i would only worry if it was a momma raising some babies in your vicinity as they cannot travel like a full grown cat.

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Cut N Run
 
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Location: central North Carolina

Re: Cougar sighting in Ontario!!

Postby Cut N Run » May 7th, 2012, 4:32 pm

The Cougar would probably be more scared of you than you are of it. It wouldn't hurt to take a few smelly old camo shirts and tie them around the bases of trees near where you intend to hunt. Those cats would probably want to shy away from that area rather than risk an encounter.

I have some experience with big cats (tigers, leopards, jaguars, cougar, lynx, serval, caracal, etc.) and most of them are not terribly confrontational unless you interfere with their offspring, their food, or challenge them. For the most part, they'd rather vanish than attack. Attack is usually one of their last choices. Think about how many big cat attacks you hear about and what the circumstances are in each. But, If you shoot a turkey and a cougar wants it, let that cat have a fresh turkey dinner & be on it's way. Having a wild cougar around says that place has a very healthy environment.

I'm always a little nervous when there's been a local bear sighting near where I'm turkey hunting, though they aren't so common here to prevent me from hunting where I want to. Most bears are just passing through in the Spring and are not year-round residents, though some are. Snake boots help a lot against poisonous snake bites. Paying attention to where you step helps too.

Jim
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Mossberg835
 
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Location: South Bristol NY

Re: Cougar sighting in Ontario!!

Postby Mossberg835 » May 7th, 2012, 8:14 pm

My dad and brother saw a cougar pass 30yards in front of the van. big brown body, LONG tail, big feet, etc. My grandma also saw one down the road from her house, but the biggest thing of proof is the fact that a small doe we found hit by a car and laying in our yard ended 20feet up a tree!!! The DEC says there are no cougars here in NY, what a load of crap. A neighbor saw one too, so they are here. We also hear them up on the hill quite a bit too. ;) ;)
Hunt for thunder chickens for months at a time...you know that's right


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