Once again Oregon authorities have killed a mountain lion near Bend, Oregon. However, this time the killers were members of the Bend Police Department.
Saturday afternoon, Bend police officers evacuated the public from the area near Pilot Butte - a 500-foot-tall extinct cinder cone volcano - shortly after a mountain lion was discovered, within its own habitat, but near a popular hiking trail.
But apparently evacuating the public wasn't sufficient to overcome the fear of lions many Oregon officials seem to have, nor was the . . .
03/26/15 Guest Commentary by William Ripple and Robert Beschta
Ripple and Beschta's work in Zion National Park was one of the first major studies to help demonstrate the importance of top predators in maintaining healthy, diverse landscapes. When the park gained popularity and more people visited, cougars were scared off. Without natural predators, mule deer over-browsed cottonwoods, causing a shift in vegetation, more erosion along stream banks, and ultimately fewer reptiles, amphibians, fish, and insects. These results, replicated in Yellowstone, have broad implications with regard to our understanding of ecosystems where large carnivores have been removed or are being recovered.
Spend just eight minutes and learn little known facts about the fascinating
mountain lion. Get a glimpse of how a mountain lion thinks, feels, and senses.
What makes the mountain lion so adaptable to a wide variety of habitats?
How does their hunting differ from that of wolves and bears? What is their
relationship to the ecosystem?