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Old 11-10-2011, 11:32 AM   #1
Buckshot
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mountain lion/cougar

Whatever you call them I saw one.

I was driving up on Friday October 14, and saw one around 11:30 p.m. walking across the northbound lane of the Northway between the rest stop before exit 30, and exit 30 itself.

It walked right across the highway, slowly, didn't seem in a rush.

It looked smaller, maybe 75 pounds, walked liked a cat, and was light in color.

I wish I could offer a picture, but it was dark out, and I was driving at 65mph.
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Old 11-10-2011, 03:38 PM   #2
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Of course it's hard to know what we see from a moving car. But I saw a similar cat a couple years ago in the same area at night (crossing the Northway between 29 and 30). Due to a unrelated traffic situation, I was only going about 30 and I got a very good look at the cat in the headlights.

I think there is one that lives in that area. It's irrelevant whether it's an escaped pet, or it wandered in from somewhere else, or whatever - it's there.

If it is an escaped pet, that's sad. These kinds of animals should not be kept as pets, as the recent Ohio tragedy underscores.
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Old 11-10-2011, 03:54 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by TCD View Post
Of course it's hard to know what we see from a moving car. But I saw a similar cat a couple years ago in the same area at night (crossing the Northway between 29 and 30). Due to a unrelated traffic situation, I was only going about 30 and I got a very good look at the cat in the headlights.

I think there is one that lives in that area. It's irrelevant whether it's an escaped pet, or it wandered in from somewhere else, or whatever - it's there.

If it is an escaped pet, that's sad. These kinds of animals should not be kept as pets, as the recent Ohio tragedy underscores.
This is why I love this forum. Thanks for sharing.

I tried to rationalize it as a pet dog, or a coyote, but after getting a nice long glance (thanks to the cat moving at a casual pace across the road) it had to be a large cat.
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Old 01-12-2012, 10:11 PM   #4
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I put this elsewhere but will add it here because it is relevant. I saw what had to be a mountain lion dead on the side of the road. Posted this: Nov 9, 2011

Did any see a dead huge cat like animal on the southbound side of I-81 about a mile closer to Syracuse then the exit for Castle Creek. It was on the left lying an its side, obviously dead and huge. If you did see it, or heard someone else talking about it, what was it? It looked like it had a body like a mountain lion, a long tail with long fur-not bushy and a face that was rounder like a lynx.Its color was pretty uniformly red-not mixed or strips or anything like that. I was moving too fast and, once I had processed what I saw, I had gone too far to see it. Apparently someone picked it up, probably for its fur, because it was gone soon thereafter. I saw it at around 10:40am Tuesday morning. If you did not see it but are familiar with the wild life around there, any ideas? Any information would be appreciated.

Would be interested to hear if others saw similar around that time. thanks
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Old 02-11-2012, 01:22 PM   #5
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I saw one 2yrs ago this summer. I was on the road to Wakely dam and it ran across the road in front of my truck. It was maybe 8 or 9 am.
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Old 02-11-2012, 04:06 PM   #6
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Those interested in discussion by the authorities regarding the numerous mountain lion sightings in the Adirondacks may find this brief video informative.
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Old 02-11-2012, 04:13 PM   #7
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It is easy to distinguish from a bobcat?
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Old 02-11-2012, 10:12 PM   #8
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It is easy to distinguish from a bobcat?
Very much so, yes.
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Old 02-13-2012, 09:35 AM   #9
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For someone that has seen neither, driving by in a car (at night?), it might be easy to get it wrong.

Because the cats are very different in size the distance thing throws people off. But if you shot one or the other and were looking at it there are many distinguishing features.
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Old 02-13-2012, 11:58 AM   #10
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It is easy to distinguish from a bobcat?
If you know what each looks like and what identifying features to look for and you are close enough to accurately judge size.
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Old 02-13-2012, 09:40 PM   #11
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If you know what each looks like and what identifying features to look for and you are close enough to accurately judge size.
Distinctions here

http://www.urbancarnivores.com/urban-carnivores/

And here

http://www.easterncougar.org/pdfs/Co...Difference.pdf
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Old 02-15-2012, 09:28 AM   #12
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What was it?

Well this is what I saw on the side of I-81 in NY (which I have reported over and over in hope others who saw it will report about it) .Others can decide what it was. it was a dead animal lying on its side with legs facing the traffic(spine way from traffic)-it was reddish/orangish had a very round cat -like face -heavy so it must have had either very thick fur or just heavy looking features with dark markings in places I can not recall but giving the overall impression of a raccoon like appearance (due to coloring but not similar in shape as it had no snout and no chin--it had a big round heavy appearance but with sweet features) a very long tail that cleared the hind legs (which may have been folded or contracted in a jump like stance) and curved (semi-circle) towards the head but stopping mid torso-allowing gravel to be visible between the tail and legs). The tail was thick and was a not at all tapered. I do not know if it had any dark coloring at the end because I did not know to look for that-and would have encoded it as simply dirty if it were dark-- and it was about 4 times the length of a house cat but height unclear because legs may have been bent. Lean not heavy-short thick fur.
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Old 02-15-2012, 11:06 AM   #13
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Did you take a picture?

A bobcat can be 3 feet long and would look real stocky versus a typical cats build but it's hard to say from your description.

It is much more likely it was a bobcat vs a mountain lion. To be honest i'm guessing it was a deer on the side of the road.
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Old 02-15-2012, 02:12 PM   #14
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Those interested in discussion by the authorities regarding the numerous mountain lion sightings in the Adirondacks may find this brief video informative.
The canister must not have been a bear vault That video was the best of the Hitler re-dubs that ive ever seen hahaha!
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Old 02-16-2012, 12:41 AM   #15
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Pumpkin, you've been drinking again? lol No it was not a deer. It was a mountain lion cub. Probably 6,7, or 8 months old. I was a few feet from it. It was quite intact. It had a long tail. The tail was visible and unmistakable. Round face-looks exactly like the one at the zoo in Watertown.
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Old 02-16-2012, 10:31 AM   #16
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Sorry I'm very skeptical and I apologize for getting all 12 angry men on you. You did include this in your original details:

"I was moving too fast and, once I had processed what I saw, I had gone too far to see it."

Subsequently, you have a lot more detail almost as if you were standing over it and examining it..sweet features, 8 months old, type of fur on the tail...etc.

I would love a picture, I'm sure hte dec/econ would as well, too bad it was gone when you went back.
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Old 02-16-2012, 09:42 PM   #17
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The differences between a mountain lion and a bobcat are so great that I find it hard to believe that people think they look similar. Its like comparing a beagle to a rottweiler. Lots of doubting Thomas's on here. Most of the people on this board are outdoor folks that would know the difference--even if they've only seen pictures.
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Old 02-17-2012, 10:40 AM   #18
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It's fair when someone makes such an unusual spotting to ask the details of the enounter. Such as did you look for and find tracks, skat or fur, did you stop your car? When I hear someone drove past, fast at night and can see facial features on a road kill it definately creates a level of doubt in my mind.

I would love to hear more details about the trail spotting, I'm not trying to be a jerk, I just know that if it were me that saw it, I would want to confirm it by looking for more evidence such as tracks. Of course I'd be cautious (ok..scared) as well but I think curiosity would win.

As an outdoors person and a hunter I know my eyes sometimes deceive my brain and I like to confirm.
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Old 02-19-2012, 03:23 PM   #19
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Let me try this again. After I do, get in your car and drive to a flat highway with a wide paved shoulder. Look for an unusual thing just left of the left sided line. In other words, look for something that is large and obvious for quite some distance before you arrive at it. Now, watch it as you pass by. What do you observe? I saw something in the distance that I could not figure out. What was it? Obviously some sort of dead animal or maybe it was a stuffed animal. It certainly was unusual because of its size, and color. The day was clear and the road was clear. It was not rush hour so the traffic was sparse. There is absolutely nothing between my starting and ending point-it is upstate NY after all. As I approach this thing to my left, I see more and more detail. I am moving at 65mph. I could not tell you things like the color of its eyes, how much white it had, etc. This is what I observed. some large red/orange (wanna call it tan, ok) animal. Far longer than a domestic. Long rope like tail that went from the base of the tail towards the head of the animal--clearing the legs and making it halfway of the length of the torso. The tail was too long for the animal. I did not notice legs except that there was pavement between the tail and leg and torso. So the tail was semi-circular toward the front of the animal with pavement/stones showing between the torso and the tail. I did not notice the legs-were they curled up or bent in a jump position or extended? Could not say. As I passed the animal the head was obvious. It was a round heavy looking head with somsome dark markings on the head. Was the animal spotted at all? I don't know. Pictures I have seen that point to spots on animals seem to show pretty faint spots-I would call those that are called spotted in the written material to be solid and red/orange. The tail was the clearest visible feature besides the head. There was no mistaking the tail for anything else. I have had many domestics, Burmese, etc. They have thinner tails that taper at the end. Did this tail have a dark spot on the end. I have no idea. I did not encode this as a Mountain lion. I called the sherif and asked what a big animal with a long tail and cat like very round face could be. She gave me a list. I looked at google image for only the features I saw. Round face, long tail, long torso. I had no expectations. I did not know that one type of animal is common and another not. I also did not think it had a mountain lion face because it was not that long kind of face you see in pictures at all. But, it was almost exactly like the face of the lion that is now in the zoo in Watertown. It must have been about that age. If that cat were to lie down, I think it would look just like what I saw. I did not take pictures because I had no idea there was any controversies and I did not encode it as a mountain lion. I asked the women what it may have been because I did not know at all. So I did not mistake a Lynx or bob cat for a mountain lion nor did I jump to any conclusions. I saw a large cat of a certain color with a long tail and a cute heavy (probably due to thick fur) looking round cat like face-no snout--no dog like features. The few features I saw would be about what anyone would see in that situation. I did not conjure up details to match my notion of a mountain lion since I'd never seen a mountain lion or any of these wild animals. It could have been a pet that got out. Who knows? But do not tell me it might have been a deer or a fox or a bob cat because none have close to the features I saw. Maybe it was a stuffed cub placed as a prank. As I was approaching it, that was one of the things I entertained--was it just a large stuffed animal. It was too life like for that but could have been a stuffed real animal-taxidermied. I don't know but it had those feathers. That I do know. I know all the literature on eyewitness testimony ala Ceci, etc. My sighting has no feature that would suggest a cognitive bias or distortion. In fact, I did not think I saw a mountain lion when I saw the animal. I had no idea of what it was and relied on the sheriff to give me a list. Then I matched by detail and still thought the mountain lion was improbable due the differences in the facial features--until I saw the baby mountain lion pictures and they are spot on. Juz saying.
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Old 02-19-2012, 03:34 PM   #20
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Also, no you can see my original post in Topix right after I saw the thing. It says the same thing. I had not recalled more features. I have found other ways to express what i saw so that it is clearer. This is not extensive--long tail, too large to be domestic, red, round face. I have not recalled any more detail than i originally had. I have written it in different ways. I was going 65 and I recall would you would expect could be detected, encoded and later retrieved in the period it takes to approach, remain parallel to and then pass a large thing on the side of the road. I do wonder about all the investment in suggesting I am wrong. I must have hallucinated. Well I am 30 years into a career, I have a phD, I have raised children, I have published extensively. I have never been accused of seeing things that are not there. I don't drink and drive. I don't do LSD or mushrooms. I don't even go looking for mountain lions. How is it not credible that I would see a large red/orange (ok, you can call it tan) animal on the side of the road with a long tail and round face? I'm not saying I saw a blue fox that painted pretty pictures. The DEC told all the people in CT and Lake George it was impossible that they saw a mountain lion and now don't even acknowledge that they lied to those poor people. Same thing here. I did see what I have described. If you want to believe I really saw a giraffe, go for it.
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