Cougars and people can coexist

Mountain lions have permanent populations in a majority of the land area of California—pretty much anywhere there are scrub or trees and deer. The Santa Monica Mountains, which are in large part in Los Angeles, have a population of twenty-plus lions and growing. Conflicts with humans are very rare.

These lions are not transients. They live here, breed here, and coexist with humans here. We just never see them.

The road density here is far greater than in any part of the Adirondacks. The Santa Monicas are cut up by canyon roads every five miles or so and come alive every weekend with traffic. I’ve been riding and driving those hills for thirty-five years. Never seen a lion.

How would lions and people in the Adirondacks do together? With a much higher deer population, and a much lower people population than in LA, I can only assume we’d both be fine—and hardly ever see each other.

Dexter Ford, Manhattan Beach, CA

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