Cougars in Washington

Despite the passage of Initiative-655 in 1996, Washington’s cougars are threatened now more than ever before. The law designed by citizens to protect large predators was broken to benefit a small interest group eager to kill more lions.

For two decades, politicians have designed policies and practices to negate the law’s limited protections. Their actions have created what many experts are now calling a dysfunctional cougar population: disproportionately composed of young, inexperienced cougars which are most likely to get into conflicts with people, pets, and livestock.

Learn more about mountain lion policy, laws, alerts and more in the tabs below.

Action Update

Update 5/4/2024: The official rule language to be voted on was published by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife. The new rule counts all human-caused lion mortalities. WA residents, WE NEED to support the new rule by action! Public comment is open until June 21, and a vote is expected in July.


USE THE ACTION ALERT HERE to comment, or visit the official public input site for other options.


Update 4/19/2024: The state Fish and Wildlife Commission voted 5-4 to draft rules implementing the petition.


Update 3/7/2024: The state Fish and Wildlife Commission is preparing to vote on directing staff on how to draft rules implementing the petition.

An action alert under the Action tab offers a chance to urge the Commission to stand firm on their decision to restore science-based management of the state’s cougars.

Update 12/14/2023: The state Fish and Wildlife Commission voted 7-2 to adopt the petition we filed. In months to come, the commission will work with department staff to develop rules to implement the petition’s requests.


Update 12/10/2023: A group of 50 independent scientists sent a letter to the Fish and Wildlife Commission supporting the science behind the petition we filed.


In November 2023, the Mountain Lion Foundation and partner organizations filed a petition with the state Department of Fish and Wildlife to restore science-based limits on cougar hunting.


Legal Status:

  • Classified as a game animal.
  • 1996: Voters approved I-655, which banned the use of hounds to hunt cougars

Estimated population: WDFW gives an estimate of around 2,000, though there may be as few as 1,200. Washington’s cougar population has been reduced by half since 2003.

Annual trophy kills: 161

Like most western states, cougars in Washington were first “managed” through a bounty process, then left for a few years to the good graces of whoever wanted to take the time to kill them, followed by the species classification by WDFW as a “game animal.” (For more about the history of cougars in Washington, visit our Washington History page.)

All of these management practices contain a single common element: killing cougars to benefit a small group of men. WDFW‘s most recent Cougar Management Plan (2015-2021) has proven itself to be little more then a list of justifications for killing cougars, rather than a serious proposal to manage a wildlife species in a way which creates and enhances a healthy and sustainable natural ecosystem.

The status of cougars in Washington is complicated by hidden intentions.

Cougar Population Estimate

Washington’s latest Cougar Management Plan acknowledges there are far fewer cougars in Washington than previously thought. The plan estimates that cougar populations throughout the state areapproximately about 1,800 +/- individuals, excluding kittens.

The Killing Continues


During the bounty period, most people were concerned only about how quickly the species could be eradicated. The few who were directly involved were motivated by how much money they could make by turning in a kill. The underlying intentions of today’s decision-makers are much less clear.

Washington’s latest Cougar Management Plan’s primary intentions are to manage cougars solely through trophy hunting to:

  • “enhance recovery efforts of prey species” (deer & elk),
  • “provide recreational hunting opportunities,”
  • “balance the need for public safety and protection of property,” and to
  • “implement harvest strategies that are consistent with the biological status of cougars and local public preference.”

In the Minds of Managers

The intentions of bureaucrats are confusing. Most probably do not fully comprehend that Washington’s lion population is at the brink of extirpation. Because commission members are appointed both to protect wildlife and to support hunting for trophy or recreation, they are likely to come from pro-hunting backgrounds. Once appointed, they are likely to seek solutions which seem to benefit both. Problems easily become obscured by peripherally-related issues such as gun rights, ranching profitability, and the availability of deer or elk to hunters who do not want to compete with cougar for their prey.

Killing is the only tool that bureaucrats seem to recognize. It’s entrenched in the culture, policy, and practice of wildlife management. And whenever a decision is made to use hunting to address a problem, there is immediate gratification: you can give a hunter his trophy, provide a houndsman with some business, gift politicians with a talking point, appease those who erroneously believe that killing cougars will benefit the deer and elk herds, and reassure those who are unnecessarily afraid of cougars.

Unfortunately, the biologists who work within WDFW who understand the importance of lowering hunt quotas to maintain sustainable, healthy populations, are often overruled by politics and Commissioners.

Killing Increases Conflicts

As cougars experience the stress associated with hunting, the imbalances that result from loss of established cougars in established territories, continuing habitat loss and increasing human activity in remote areas, conflicts are more likely to result. Cougars must travel further for a suitable mate. Well-established adults are replaced by inexperienced and competing young. Kittens are deprived of a mother before they are fully trained.

The irony is that the appearance of increasing conflicts is often seen by bureaucrats as evidence that cougar populations are healthy and increasing too. The outcry that agencies “haven’t done enough” can be compelling. The fact is, WDFW has done too much… but true understanding of the danger to the species is difficult to achieve because it is counterintuitive, and the real situation may not become glaringly apparent until it is far too late. When complaints finally begin to drop because cougar populations have become dangerously low, bureaucrats are likely to pat themselves on the back with congratulations that their policies have finally worked.

Complaints are not a valid indicator of the sustainability of cougar populations. Not only because human-cougar conflicts are actually more likely when the big cats are over-hunted, but also because the complaint process can be so easily abused by special interests.

Public Opinions

Urban home of high-tech environmental, computer and flight industries, yet steeped in rural traditions of forestry, ranching and hunting, Washington is a study in contrasts. There are few more divisive issues than conservation of the State’s big predators: wolves, bears, and cougars.


Genetic research indicates that the common ancestor of today’s Leopardus, Lynx, Puma, Prionailurus, and Felis lineages migrated across the Bering land bridge into the Americas approximately 8 to 8.5 million years ago. What we know as a cougar today became recognizable as a distinct species about 400,000 years ago, and inhabited nearly all of the Americas for hundreds of thousands of years, alongside the giant sloth, the mammoth, the dire wolf and the saber-toothed lion. During the Pleistocene ice ages, conditions appear to have become too cold for cougar populations to survive, and paleontologist believe that at the end of the last ice age, the big cats repopulated North America from a southern refugium. Cougars have inhabited Washington, alongside humans, for more than 40,000 years.

Native people memorialized the cougar in rock carvings, totems, in story and in song.

Along the Columbia River, a Wanapum petroglyph clearly depicting a cougar is one of hundreds preserved in the Ginkgo Petrified Forest. The famous “river spirit” petroglyph on the Washington side of the Columbia

The Weaver Brothers’ cabin, displaying an assortment of animal pelts trapped in the Stehekin River drainage of the North Cascades. Note the cougar pelt to the right of the doorway.

River Gorge near The Dalles may also represent a cougar (pictured above).

The name for cougars in the Sahaptin dialect was kw’ayawi; kw’aawi, or xwayawi. Among the Salishan names for cougar are s-wa, sk-tisemiye, and cwa-a.

The Weaver Brothers’ cabin, displaying an assortment of animal pelts trapped in the Stehekin River drainage of the North Cascades. Note the cougar pelt to the right of the doorway.

Fur Trading Period

You can read Washington Irving’s book, The Fur Traders, in Project Guttenberg.

The first European explorers of Washington were fur traders, traveling on foot and by canoe in the late 1700s. Many of the early settlers trapped beaver, bear, wolf, lynx, fisher, marten, fox and cougar to supplement their income. Europeans took advantage of native people’s knowledge of the area, and encouraged natives to trap in exchange for goods and services.

The fur trading period — as well as the timber industry — helped to establish a culture in Washington that treated wildlife and ecosystems primarily as commodities to be exploited, rather than as resources to be sustained. The fur trade, particularly beaver, dominated the economy in the early 1800’s, until streams had become over-trapped. Hudson’s Bay Company posts and forts served as social as well as economic centers.

You can read Washington Irving’s book, The Fur Traders, in Project Guttenberg.

This subculture remains in the eastern parts of the State, while people in the highly populated western urban centers now generally maintain a more environmentally sensitive point of view. The demographic division between the east and the west is reflected in Washington politics, and has heavily influenced the success of cougar legislation and conservation efforts.

Bounty Period

Credit: Forks Timber Museum

Prior to the formation of the Washington Game Department in 1933,

individual counties propagated a series of short-lived cougar bounty programs. No records are available on the success of these programs, nor how many cougars were actually killed. In 1933, cougars were classified statewide as a “predator,” and in 1935, a bounty was emplaced by the state legislature.

For 25 years, from 1936 through 1960, the State of Washington paid a bounty on the 3,064 cougar carcasses presented to government agents. The peak cougar mortality period for this “livestock protection” program occurred over the six years following the end of World War II (1946-51). But this level of killing couldn’t be sustained and, beginning in 1952, the number of dead cougars turned in for the bounty steadily dropped to only 55 for the final year (1960) of the program.

Unregulated Hunting

After Washington discontinued their cougar bounty program there followed five years (1961-65) where cougars were still classified as a predator, but no bounty was paid, nor were there any restrictions on the number killed. During those five years, 384 cougars were reported killed, but reporting by cougar hunters at that time is acknowledged as spotty at best.

Trophy and Recreational Hunting

In 1966, the Washington Game Commission classified cougars as a “game animal.” Since 1966, recreational hunters  have killed at least 8,500 cougars in the state.

Between 1966 and 1996, the primary method of hunting cougars in Washington involved the use of hunting-hounds to track, chase, and tree the cougar. After the passage of I-655 in 1996, hounds were banned for recreational cougar hunting. Subsequently, trophy hunters had to rely on “opportunistic” kills, generated while in the act of hunting other prey — most commonly deer or elk. In 1997, to compensate for what WDFW anticipated would be a dramatic reduction in annual cougar mortalities, policies were implemented to increase the number of cougar hunters, while at the same time reducing or removing many of the existing cougar hunting restrictions. (For more about recent legal assaults on cougars in Washington, visit our Washington Law tab.)

During the 25-year bounty period, 3,064 cougars were reported killed. During the last 25 years of available cougar mortality data people have managed to kill at least 4,700 cougars — that’s a 50 percent increase.

Washington has increased the number of cougar tags to 66,000 per year, even while acknowledging that cougar numbers in the State may have dropped below 2,000.


The State of Washington encompasses approximately 71,342 square miles of land. The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) states that cougars can be found in the forested regions of the state, which represent around 34,168 square miles. This habitat is distributed throughout much of Washington, except for a large expanse of the Columbia River basin.

Washington Cougar Habitat

Reports provided by WDFW and publications by leading cougar biologists indicate that Washington’s cougar density is approximately 1.7 cougars per 100 square kilometers of habitat.

With about 90,000 square kilometers of habitat (34,168 square miles), Washington’s cougar population is currently somewhere around 1,500 animals and likely declining due to increased trophy hunting and habitat loss.  This number is fairly close to what WDFW thought existed back in 1976 — at the end of the bounty period — when populations were considered tragically low and at serious risk.  Despite four decades of ‘protection’ as a regulated game animal, these low numbers continue to signal the downward spiral of the species towards extirpation (extinction within a specific geographic region).


In Washington’s legal codePuma concolor is generally referred to as “cougar.”

Species Status

The species is classified as a game animal, along with eastern cottontail, Nuttall’s cottontail, snowshoe hare, white-tailed jackrabbit, black-tailed jackrabbit, fox, black bear, raccoon, bobcat, Roosevelt and Rocky Mountain elk, mule deer, black-tailed deer, white-tailed deer, moose, pronghorn, mountain goat, California and Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep, and bullfrogs. The species is further classified as big game, along with elk/wapiti, blacktail deer, mule deer, whitetail deer, moose, mountain goat, caribou, mountain sheep, pronghorn antelope, black bear, and grizzly bear.

Laws and regulations pertaining to Washington’s threatened and endangered species can be applied to mountain lions because any species native to Washington may be classified as threatened or endangered. However, mountain lions are not currently classified as threatened or endangered in Washington because the Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission does not believe that mountain lions are seriously threatened with extinction throughout all or a significant portion of their range within the state.

State Law

Generally, treatment of wildlife in the State of Washington is governed by the Revised Code of Washington – the collection of all the laws passed by the Washington legislature. The state’s treatment of wildlife is also governed by the Washington Administrative Code – the collection of all the state’s agency rules. Since our summary below may not be completely up to date, you should be sure to review the most current law for the State of Washington.

You can check the statutes directly at a state-managed website.

These statutes are searchable. Be sure to use the name “cougar” to accomplish your searches.

The Legislature

The Washington State Legislature is the state’s bicameral legislative body. The lower chamber – the House of Representatives – is made up of 98 members who serve 2-year terms. The Democratic Party has controlled the Washington House of Representatives since 2002. The upper chamber – the Senate – consists of 49 members who serve 4-year terms. Washington maintains this website to help you locate your state legislators.

The Washington Constitution allows the state legislature to determine when it convenes. Washington law establishes the second Monday of January each year as the date the legislature convenes. The constitution limits regular sessions in odd-numbered years to 105 consecutive days. In even-numbered years, regular sessions are limited to 60 consecutive days. Special legislative sessions may be called by either the governor or by the vote of two-thirds of the members of each chamber. Special sessions are limited to 30 consecutive days.

Initiative and Referendum Processes

Washington allows its citizens to propose new laws through its initiative process and to repeal existing laws through its veto referendums. Washington initiatives are submitted to either the people or to the state legislature. Unlike some other states, Washington does not allow citizens to amend its constitution through initiatives. The initiative and referendum processes are created by Article II of the Washington Constitution, and they are governed by Chapter 29A.72 of the Revised Code of Washington. In order to be placed on the ballot or submitted to the legislature, proposed initiatives must gather valid voters’ signatures equal to 8% of the number of votes cast for the office of governor in the last gubernatorial election. Veto referendums require valid signatures equal to 4% of the last gubernatorial vote. In order to pass, an initiative must be approved by a simple majority – unless the initiative aims to authorize gambling or a lottery, in which case a 60% supermajority is required – and at least one-third of those voting in the election must have voted on the measure. Unless the initiative specifies a different date, an approved initiative goes into effect 30 days after the election.

Initiative 655

The Washington Bear-Baiting Act — submitted to voters as Initiative 655 — was approved by 62.99% of voters on November 5, 1996. The initiative classified baiting black bears and hunting black bears, mountain lions, bobcats, and lynxes with dogs as gross misdemeanors in the State of Washington. However, there have been many attempts to overturn Initiative 655 since it was passed.

State Regulation

Washington’s wildlife regulations are found in Title 232 of the Washington Administrative Code. The regulations are written by the Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission.

Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission

The Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission is made up of nine members who serve 6-year terms. Members are appointed by the governor and confirmed by the Washington Senate. At least three commissioners must reside east of the Cascade Mountains and at least three must reside west of the Cascade Mountains. No two commissioners may reside in the same county. Law requires that all commissioners “have general knowledge of the habits and distribution of fish and wildlife” and prohibits them from holding any other office. When making appointments, the governor is to ensure the commission represents diverse viewpoints including sport fishers, commercial fishers, hunters, private landowners, and environmentalists. The commission’s main responsibilities are to set the state’s wildlife regulations and to oversee the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife.

Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW)

The (WDFW) Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife enforces the state’s wildlife laws and policies. The department divides itself into separate wildlife and enforcement branches. The WDFW is a department within the Washington executive branch. The Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission oversees the WDFW’s activities.

Management Plan

Washington’s latest mountain lion management plan is found in the state’s 2015-2021 Game Management Plan. The state’s plans for game management cover 6-year periods. The report is prompted by the WDFW’s legal mandate to “preserve, protect, perpetuate, and manage” the state’s wildlife. The plan is assembled by the WDFW Wildlife Program and guides the Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission’s policy decisions.

Hunting Law

Hunting of mountain lions is allowed in the State of Washington. The regulations and laws governing “recreational” hunting of mountain lions specify 150 game management units organized into 6 regions. Mountain lion hunting season runs from September 1 to March 31.

Hound hunting is not allowed. However, the WDFW may allow the use of dogs during “public safety cougar removals.”

Washington allows the hunting of mountain lions with non-fully automatic firearms, centerfire cartridges greater than .22 caliber, shotguns 20 gauge or larger firing slugs or buckshot size #1 or larger, centerfire handguns with a minimum barrel length of four inches, crossbows with a draw weight greater than 125 pounds and a working trigger guard, and muzzleloading firearms .45 caliber or larger. Muzzleloading handguns used to hunt mountain lions may have one or two barrels, but both barrels must be rifled and be eight inches or longer. Mountain lions may also be hunted with long bows, recurve bows, and compound bows that produce at least 40 pounds of pull.

The Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission sets “harvest guidelines” for most of Washington’s game management units. Game management units may be closed to mountain lion hunting after January 1 if the unit’s harvest guideline is met or exceeded. Harvest guidelines are based on recommendations in Washington’s Game Management Plan. Washington prohibits the killing of spotted kittens and adult mountain lions accompanied by spotted kittens.

Public Safety Law

Washington policy allows a person to kill any mountain lion that is attacking a person or “posing an immediate threat of physical harm to a person.” Further policy states that the killing of a mountain lion in order to protect a person must be reported to the WDFW with 24 hours and the carcass must be surrendered to the WDFW or its designees.

Depredation Law

Depredation policy in Washington allows an owner to kill one mountain lion that is attacking livestock or domestic animals without a permit. A permit is required to kill any number of mountain lions that are damaging crops or to kill multiple mountain lions that are attacking livestock. Further policy allows the mountain lion carcass to be kept by the owner. There is a government-funded compensation program for owners who have worked with the WDFW to prevent depredation.


Mountain lions may not be trapped for fur in Washington. Washington’s regulation governing trapping states that only furbearing animals may be trapped. The state does not include mountain lions on its list of furbearing animals. If a mountain lion is caught in a trap, it must be released unharmed. If the mountain lion cannot be released unharmed, the trapper is to notify the WDFW immediately. Intentionally trapping a mountain lion is a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment of up to 90 days and a fine of up to $1,000.


Poaching law in the State of Washington provides some protection of mountain lions in law, but only as a deterrent. It is rare for penalties to be sufficiently harsh to keep poachers from poaching again. Hunting a mountain lion in any unlawful manner in Washington is generally classified as “unlawful hunting of big game in the second degree,” which is a gross misdemeanor. A gross misdemeanor is punishable by up to 364 days of imprisonment and a fine of up to $5,000. The WDFW will also revoke all the poacher’s existing licenses, tags, and permits, and suspend his/her hunting privileges for two years. A poacher is guilty of “unlawful hunting of big game in the first degree” if they possess three or more big game animals during the same “course of events” or if they are less than five years removed from a previous conviction for unlawful hunting of big game. Unlawful hunting of big game in the first degree is a class C felony punishable by imprisonment for up to five years and a fine of up to $10,000. Upon conviction, the WDFW will also suspend the poacher’s licenses, tags, and permits, and suspend his/her hunting privileges for ten years.

Road Mortalities

The Washington State Department of Transportation does not keep records of mountain lions killed on the State’s roads.


Washington law generally bans the private possession of mountain lions. The law states, “A person shall not own, possess, keep, harbor, bring into the state, or have custody or control of a potentially dangerous wild animal,” and goes on to ban the breeding of potentially dangerous wild animals. Mountain lions are listed as potentially dangerous wild animals. This ban, however, does not apply to institutions authorized by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife to keep “deleterious exotic wildlife” (a designation that does not) include mountain lions), zoos accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, nonprofit animal protection organizations such as shelters, law enforcement officials in the course of enforcing wildlife laws, veterinary hospitals or clinics, authorized wildlife rehabilitators, wildlife sanctuaries, research facilities, circuses, anyone temporarily transporting potentially dangerous wild animals through the state, domesticated animals, anyone displaying wildlife at a fair approved by the Washington State Department of Agriculture, and game farms which may not possess mountain lions.

Mountain lions may be kept for rehabilitation purposes in the State of Washington. An individual wishing to rehabilitate mountain lions in the state must obtain both a general wildlife rehabilitation permit and a large-carnivore rehabilitation endorsement. The state’s regulation does not state what is required on the permit application but requires the applicant to demonstrate that he or she has completed at least six months or 1,000 hours of wildlife rehabilitation under the supervision of an authorized wildlife rehabilitator, provide the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife with a letter of recommendation from an authorized rehabilitator who agrees to advise the applicant, submit a written agreement signed by a veterinarian who agrees to serve as the applicant’s principal veterinarian, successfully complete the Washington General Wildlife Rehabilitation Examination, and have access to suitable rehabilitation facilities. Rehabilitation permits are valid for three years if not revoked sooner. In order to receive a large-carnivore rehabilitation endorsement , an applicant must demonstrate at least three months or 500 hours of experience rehabilitating and handling large carnivores (which are brown bear, black bear, cougar, wolf, bobcat, and lynx), show that he or she has been trained in large animal restrain techniques, submit to the department a letter of recommendation from a large carnivore rehabilitator who agrees to advise the applicant, successfully complete the state’s large carnivore rehabilitation examination, and possess approved rehabilitation facilities. Washington requires rehabilitation facilities to meet standards set by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, the National Wildlife Rehabilitators Association, and the International Wildlife Rehabilitators Council. Authorized state and federal agents may inspect rehabilitation facilities, records, equipment, and animals without prior announcement at any reasonable time. Rehabilitators must keep daily records and submit an annual report to the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife. Daily records must include all wildlife acquisitions, transfers, admissions, releases, deaths, reason(s) for admission, nature of illness or injury, dates of disposition, and any tag or band numbers. Annual reports must be completed on the form provided by the department and be submitted before January 31 each year. Copies of the rehabilitator’s daily records from the year must be submitted along with his or her annual report.


Mountain lion research is usually conducted in collaboration with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife. Researchers must obtain a scientific permit under conditions prescribed by the department’s director, but neither law nor regulation spells out the conditions. The applicant must demonstrate that he or she is qualified to undertake the proposed research and that the research is needed. The fee for a scientific permit is $12 and also requires an application fee of $100. Scientific permits are valid for the time specified on the permit unless they are revoked before expiration. There do not appear to be reporting requirements for researchers.



Washington Cougar Files Sorted by Type

Scientific Research

  • Beausoleil et al 2005 ABSTRACT Using DNA to Estimate Cougar Populations in Washington A Collaborative Approach
  • Cooley 2008 MASTERS THESIS Effects of hunting on cougar population demography
  • Cooley Wielgus 2009 Does Hunting Regulate Cougar Populations test compensatory mortality
  • Cooley Wielgus 2009 Source populations in carnivore management cougar demography and emigration in a lightly hunted population
  • Cooley Wielgus et al 2008 Cougar Prey Selection in a White tailed Deer and Mule Deer Community
  • Cooley Wielgus et al 2009 Does Hunting Regulate Cougar Populations a test of the compensatory mortality hypothesis
  • Cruickshank 2004 MASTERS THESIS Prey Selection and Kill Rates of Cougars In Northeastern Washington
  • Cruickshank et al 2003 Functional Response of Cougars and Prey Availability in Northeastern Washington
  • Cruickshank et al 2005 ABSTRACT Prey Selection and Functional Response of Cougars in Northeastern Washington
  • EPA NWPPC 2002 Annual Progress Report Effects of Cougar Predation and Nutrition on Mule Deer Population Declines in the IM Province of the Columbia Basin 2001 2002
  • Evermann et al 1997 Occurrence of Puma Lentivirus Infection in Cougars from Washington 1993 1994
  • Gross 2008 No Place for Predators
  • Harlow et al 1992 Stress Response of Cougars to Nonlethal Pursuit by Hunters
  • Keehner 2009 MASTERS THESIS Effects of Reproductive Status of Mountain Lions on Prey Selection of Mule Deer and White Tailed Deer In Northeastern Washington
  • Kertson 2005 Political and Socio Economic Influences on Cougar Management Legislation In Washington State Post Initiative 655
  • Kertson 2013 Demographic influences on cougar residential use and interactions with people in western Washington JM
  • Kertson et al 2011 Cougar Space Use and Movements in the Wildland Urban Landscape of Western Washington
  • Kertson Grue 2005 ABSTRACT Cougars and Citizen Science Evaluating Accuracy of Data Collected By Student Volunteers on Cougar Ecology Preliminary Findings
  • Koehler Maletzke 2003 Movement Patterns of Male and Female Cougars (Puma Concolor) Implications for Harvest Vulnerability
  • Koehler Nelson 2003 ABSTRACT Project Cat (Cougars and Teaching) Integrating Science, Schools, and Community in Development Planning
  • Lambert 2003 MASTERS THESIS Dynamics and Viability of a Cougar Population in the Pacific Northwest
  • Lambert et al ABSTRACT 2003 Dynamics and Viability of a Cougar Population in the Pacific Northwest
  • Lambert Wielgus et al 2006 Cougar Population Dynamics and Viability in the Pacific Northwest
  • Land Information Bulletin 2001 Tracking Cougars with Project CAT
  • Maletzke Meyer 2005 Identifying I 90 Wildlife Corridors Using GIS & GPA Spatial Temporal Model of Landscape Use by GPS MArked Cougars
  • Martorello Beausoleil 2003 ABSTRACT Characteristics of Cougar Harvest with and Without the Use of Dogs
  • Meyer 2016 POSTER A Comparative Analysis of Mountain Lion Predation Site Properties Yellowstone Snoqualmie
  • Morrison 2010 MASTERS THESIS Effects of Hunting Males On Female Cougar Population Gorwth and Persistence
  • Peebles et al 2013 Effects of Remedial Sport Hunting on Cougar Complaints and Livestock Depredations 2005 2010
  • Pfeifer 2004 Role of the Nursing Order in Social Development of Mountain Lion Kittens OLYMPIC GAME FARM SEQUIM
  • Plos Biology Gross 2008 No Place for Predators
  • Project Cat (Cougars and Teaching) A Unique Collaborative Project Between Schools and Reasearchers
  • Rickard Foreyt 1992 Gastrointestinal Parasites of Cougars in Washington and the First Report of Ollulanus tricuspis in a Sylvatic Felid from North America
  • Robinson Cooley Wielgus 2008 Sink Populations in Carnviore Management Cougar Demography and Immigration in a Hunted Population
  • Robinson et al 2003 ABSTRACT Cougar Total Predation Response to Differing Prey Densities A Proposed Experiment to Test the Apparent Competition Hypothesis
  • Skalski 1994 Estimating Wildlife Populations Based on Incomplete Area Surveys
  • Vales 2005 Modeling Prey and Cougar with an Approach for Managing Cougars To Meet Prey Population Objectives
  • WA Rertson 2010 DISSERTATION Cougar Ecology, Behavior, and Interactions with People in a Wildland Urban Environment in Western Washington
  • Warren Beausoleil 2016 Forest Cover Mediates Genetic Connectivity of Northwestern Cougars CG
  • WDFW Beausoleil 2005 ABSTRACT Using DNA to Estimate Cougar Populations in Washington A Collaborative Approach 8MLW
  • WDFW Beausoleil 2013 Cougar Gender and Age ID Chart
  • WDFW Beausoleil et al 2013 EARLY VIEW Research to Regulation Cougar Social Behavior as a Guide for Management
  • WDFW Rice 2003 Mountain Goat Research in the Washington Cascade Mountains
  • WDFW Rice 2006 Present and Future Mountain Goat Research in Washington State
  • WDFW Rice 2010 Effects of Mountain Goat Harvest on Historic and Contemporary Populations
  • Weilgus et al 2007 Effects of White tailed Deer Expansion and Cougar Hunting on Cougar Deer and Human Interactions Wielgus
  • White et al 2011 Differential Prey Use by Male and Female Cougars in Washington 2003 2008
  • Wielgus 2015 PPT Effects of Sport Hunting on Cougar Population Community and Landscape Ecology HSUSconf
  • Wielgus et al 2002 Effects of Cougar Predation and Nutrition on Mule Deer Population Declines in the Intermountain Province of the Columbia Basin Annual Report 2001 2002
  • Wielgus et al 2013 Effects of male trophy hunting on female carnivore population growth
  • Wielgus et al 2013 Effects of Male Trophy Hunting on Female Carnivore Population Growth and Persistence BioCons

Agency Reports



  • Ware, Dave, WDFW Cougar Mortality Data 2000-2011 Statistics, 2011
  • Ware, Dave, WDFW Cougar Mortality Data , 2011
  • Dansel, Senate Bill 6287 Cougar Control With Hounds, 2014
  • WDFW, RCW 77.36, 2014


  • 1976 Cougar Status Report — 1st Mountain Lion Workshop
  • 1984 Cougar Status Report — 2nd Mountain Lion Workshop
  • 1988 Cougar Status Report — 3rd Mountain Lion Workshop
  • 1996 Cougar Status Report — 5th Mountain Lion Workshop
  • 2003 Cougar Status Report — 7th Mountain Lion Workshop
  • 2008 Cougar Status Report — 9th Mountain Lion Workshop
  • Around the Valley, Cougar Killed Horse, Animal Control Says , 2005
  • Associated Press, Pilot Cougar Hunt with Dogs Approved in Five Counties , 2004
  • Associated Press, Transplanted Elk Falling Prey to Cougar Attacks , 2004
  • Associated Press, Raw Cougar Meat Blamed for Trichinosis , 2007
  • Associated Press, Treed Cougar Shot, Killed in Malott, Washington , 2008
  • Associated Press, Queary 2001 Hunting, Trapping Initiatives Challenged , 2001
  • Associated Press, Valdes 2008 Lawmakers Look at Expanding the Use of Hound Dogs in Cougar Hunts , 2008
  • Campbell Methow Valley News, Lucky Libby Relocated After Suspected Alpaca Kill , 2009
  • Chinook, Observer, The Cougar a Stealthy Cat , 2005
  • Conservation Magazine, Stover, Troubled Teens , 2009
  • Creighton, WSU Wildlife Ecology and Forest Habitat, 1997
  • Farrell, Cougars, Cougars on the Prowl in the Valley , 2008
  • Forman, Secret Family Life of Cougars – Wildlife Conservation April 2009 , 2009
  • Hearld, News Services State Extends, Hearld News Services 2008 State Extends Cougar Hunting Project for Another Three Years , 2008
  • Henneman,, Cougar Control Pilot Project a Success , 2008
  • High Country News, Gross, Cougars in Chaos , 2008
  • High Country News, Hartwig, The Burbs Target Cougars , 2000
  • High Country News, Marston, Heard Around the West , 2001
  • Jacobson, Restaurant Owner Spots Cougar in Parking Lot Near Ferry Terminal Early Thursday Morning , 2005
  • McCoy, Poster: WDFW Karelian Bear Dog event, 2012
  • Methow Valley News Online , Collaring the big cats , 2013
  • MLF, WA Legislature extends use of hounds in cougar hunts for 3 years , 2008
  • New Milford Times Lombino, Mountain Lion in Washington , 2002
  • Oregon Statesman Journal, Mehaffey, Cougar Study Tracks Big Cats , 2004
  • Seattle Post, Seattle Post-Intelligencer Talking to Tippi Hedren about Shambala ,
  • Seattle Post-Intelligencer, Naimon, Protect, Don’t Shoot, Northwest Cougars , 2008
  • Seattle Post-Intelligencer, Trageser, State Weighs Continued Use of Dogs for Hunting Cougars , 2008
  • Seattle Post-Intelligencer, Valdes, Lawmakers Look at Expanding the Use of Hound Dogs in Cougar Hunts , 2008
  • Seattle Times, Washington Government Agrees to Expand Cougar Hunts with Hound Dogs , 2008
  • Seattle Times, Doughton, Is Cougar Hunting Breeding Chaos , 2008
  • Seattle Times, Doughton, Is Stepped-up Hunting Intensifying Cougar-Human Conflicts , 2008
  • Seattle Times, Doughton, State to Decide on Plan to Scale Back Cougar Hunting Today , 2008
  • Seattle Times, Krishnan, Cougar Kills Pet Alpaca , 2008
  • Seattle Times, Thomas, Cougar Encounters Rise and Fall as Rules for Hunting Change , 2007
  • Seattle Times, Thomas, State’s Carnivore Specialist Helped People, Cougars Coexist , 2007
  • Smith, Go (away) Coug , 2008
  • The Columbian, Klickitat County Proposed for Cougar Hunting with Hounds , 2008
  • The Columbian, Robinson, Wildlife Closer than Urban Dwellers Think , 2007
  • The Daily News, Slape, The Daily News , 2007
  • The Leader, McGrady , Big Cougar Hunted After it Kills Domestic Sheep , 2008
  • The Olympian, Possible Cougar Sighting Under Investigation in the West Olympia , 2008
  • The Oregonian, Hunters for Cougar that Scratched Grand Coulee Boy , 2008
  • The Statesman, Henneman, State Legislature Authorizes the Probram for Three More Years , 2008
  • Varosh, State Web Site Tracks Cougar Sightings, Database is Compiled From Public Reports, Complaints and Can Be Searched by Town , 2005
  • Washington ICEO, Winninghoff, Rethinking Eco-friendly Investing , 2006
  • Weiser Signal American, Ruth, Hunter Attracts Cougar He Didn’t Want , 2005
  • Wenatchee World, Seventh State Cougar Cub Off To Zoo , 2007
  • Wenatchee World, Mehaffey, Bill on Hunting Cougars with Dogs Passes House , 2008
  • Western Roundup Gross, Cougars in Chaos , 2008
  • World, Mehaffey, Officer Kills Cougar in Malott , 2008
  • Yakima Hearld-Republic, Sandsberry, Cougar Conundum , 2008
  • Yakima Hearld-Republic, Sandsberry, Quick Shot, Big Result at Teen Bags King-sized Cougar , 2007
  • Yakima Herald Republic, Mountain Lion Sightings on the Rise Across Valley , 2005
  • Yakima Herald Republic, Muir, Raw Cougar Meat Makes Hunter Sick , 2007
  • , Cougar Concern Raised , 2008