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Photo of ~insert photo description~.


Kentucky still allows trapping on much of its public lands.

Kentucky classifies mountain lions as an inherently dangerous animal. Further, Kentucky limits state endangered species protection to only those recognized as federally endangered species, which does not include mountain lions. Thankfully both trapping for fur and hunting mountain lions within the state is prohibited. Unfortunately, it is unlikely that the penalties for illegally shooting a mountain lion are sufficiently harsh to keep poachers from poaching again.

  • Return to the portal page for Kentucky.

  • The status of Puma concolor in Kentucky.

  • State law and regulations affecting cougars.

  • The history of cougars in Kentucky.

  • Ecosystems and habitat in Kentucky.

  • Cougar science and research in Kentucky.

  • 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 Kentucky.

Interim Steps:

  1. Become familiar with the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources stance on mountain lions. Reach out to MLF and wildlife experts. Then attend public meetings with the Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources Commission and ask them to:
    1. Develop a Mountain Lion Management Plan to 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 Kentucky’s Wildlife Diversity Program to develop a state endangered and threatened species list that includes mountain lions.
    4. Consider regulations addressing mountain lion depredation that require the use of non-lethal strategies.
  2. Do you know of a state official that may understand the importance of protecting mountain lions? Write to them:
    1. 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.
    2. Urge them to develop new anti-poaching regulations with penalties severe enough to dissuade 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. Establishing safety corridors for mountain lions to prevent habitat fracturing and isolation.
    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 Kentucky. Carter discusses the often ridiculous lengths the Kentucky 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 Kentucky 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...

?, Director

Main Office:

Department of Natural Resources
#1 Sportsman's Lane
Frankfort, KY 40601

Wildlife Biologist

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

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.