Photo of ~insert photo description~.
Photo of ~insert photo description~.


Ignoring mountain lions isn't the right path forward.

While laws and regulations specifically addressing mountain lions are nonexistent in Delaware, by default they are classified as protected wildlife. This makes it illegal for lions to be hunted or trapped, but it does not provide the protection they need.

Although it can be argued that mountain lions meet Delaware's "seriously threatened with extinction" criteria to be listed as an endangered species, they are not. There is no mountain lion management plan, and poaching laws offer merely a deterrent at best.

  • Return to the portal page for Delaware.

  • The status of Puma concolor in Delaware.

  • State law and regulations affecting cougars.

  • The history of cougars in Delaware.

  • Ecosystems and habitat in Delaware.

  • Cougar science and research in Delaware.

  • Our library of media, research and reports.

  • How you can take action to help!

Here's what you can do:

Immediate Steps:

  1. Build a coalition to learn from and educate people on how to peacefully coexist with the mountain lion population.
  2. Contribute a positive voice. Write a letter to your local newspaper expressing your excitement about local mountain lions and your views on the importance of protecting them.
  3. Distribute educational information on how residents can protect their pets and livestock. Consider animal shelters, veterinary clinics, 4H clubs, Scouting organizations, FFA, shooting clubs, and any other pertinent public locations as potential outlets.
  4. Email and suggest local officials friendly to mountain lion conservation in Delaware.

Interim Steps:

  1. Become familiar with the Wildlife section of Title 7 (Natural Resources and Environmental Control) of the Delaware Administrative Code. Reach out to MLF and wildlife experts. Then attend public meetings with the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) specifically it’s Division of Fish and Wildlife and ask them to:
    1. Develop a Mountain Lion Management Plan that will protect mountain lions and their habitat
    2. Offer information and training for landowners on non-consumptive techniques for dealing with potential depredation issues.
    3. Petition for mountain lions to be added to the state endangered and threatened species list.
    4. Consider wildlife safety corridors to prevent encounters, habitat fracturing and isolation.
  2. Do you know of a state official that may understand the importance of protecting mountain lions? Write to them:
    1. Implore them to begin an effort to establish depredation regulations that require the exhaustive use non-lethal strategies.
    2. Propose a government-funded compensation program for domestic animals lost to mountain lions that compensates the late owner with resources to protects their remaining assets from mountain lions.
    3. Revise anti-poaching regulations to impose penalties severe enough to deter any individual's desire to illegally take a mountain lion.

Long term Steps:

  1. Request to meet with your state legislators to talk about
    1. Developing a liability initiative to incentivize or require owners to take certain measures to protect pets and livestock from mountain lions.
    2. The potential management benefits that could stem from accurately recording mountain lions killed on the state’s roads.

ON AIR: Phil Carter - One Step Forward, Two Steps Back

03/19/13 An Audio Interview with Julie West, MLF Broadcaster

In this edition of our audio podcast ON AIR, MLF Volunteer Julie West interviews mountain lion program manager Phil Carter of Animal Protection of Delaware. Carter discusses the often ridiculous lengths the Delaware Department of Game and Fish will go to to disregard the public, bury scientific research, and ignore all common sense. Trying to protect mountain lions in Delaware and incorporate the best science into management has turned into a game of one step forward, two steps back.

Click here to view our Activist Guide...

Becoming a Mountain Lion Activist

There are lots of opportunities to take action!

Are you new to mountain lion activism? You want to change your local environment to improve it for cougars... but you don't know how to start. You may feel like you are all alone... but it takes just one person to change the attitudes and lifestyles of hundreds of others. You don't need to belong to a group. It doesn't take special skills or superhuman abilities. You just need to care enough about cougars to want to help them survive. You've already done the hard part, now let us help you with the next step.

Click here to open a new window and visit the agency's website...

Delaware Division of Fish and Wildlife.

Commonly abbreviated as: DFW

David Saveikis, Director

Main Office:
89 Kings Highway
Dover, DE 19901
(302) 739-9910

Wildlife Section
Rob Hossler
Ommelanden Hunter Education Center
1205 River Road
New Castle, DE 19720
(302) 739-9912

Please write to the director and express your concern for lions in Delaware.

Thank the agency when they take steps to protect our state's cougars. When they fall short of expectations, politely ask for policy reform and more officer training.