Mountain lions (AKA cougars, pumas, Puma concolor, etc.) have a habit of turning up where they are not supposed to be. There is a breeding population of them in Los Angeles, last summer one made an appearance in San Francisco, and in 2008 a mountain lion made it all the way to Chicago. But few stories are as remarkable as the 2,000 mile journey of the Connecticut Cat; who is the subject of an upcoming webinar on Wednesday, September 28 from 11 am to 12 pm PDT.
When cougars reach 13.5 – 18 months of age, they leave their natal range to establish territories of their own (Hunter, 2015). This is what the Connecticut Cat did when he left his home turf in the Black Hills of South Dakota. But unlike most mountain lions from that area he headed east – and he kept going. He traveled through Minnesota, Wisconsin, Ontario, New York, and eventually he arrived in southern Connecticut: where he was unfortunately hit by a car.
Despite this sad ending, the Connecticut Cat’s death was not in vain. He was glimpsed by several people along the way, and his journey sparked increased appreciation for his species. He showed just how remarkable mountain lions are, reemphasizing the fact that they are more than just killers. The producers of The Secret Life of Mountain Lions are now helping to continue the Connecticut Cat’s legacy by hosting a free webinar with author William Stolzenburg, who has just written a book called Heart of a Lion: A Lone Cat’s Walk Across America.
The webinar will be held on Wednesday, September 28 from 11 am – 12 pm Pacific Time (2 pm – 3 pm EST). William Stolzenburg will share a wealth of information about the Connecticut Cat, and participants will be able to ask him questions via the internet. This will be an excellent learning opportunity for anyone who is interested in mountain lions: especially those who would like to see them return to the eastern US.