Here are the most fascinating mountain lion facts for kids including its habitat, diet, and reproduction. The mountain lion (Puma concolor) is commonly recognized as cougar, puma, and panther. The mountain lion is the member of Felidae family and is endemic to the America. Unlike any other wild cats, these lions occupy one of the greatest ranges in the Western Hemisphere. These ranges encompass from Canada and goes to the southern Andes of South Africa. Cougar is known to reside in almost every American habitat. These animals are considered to be the second heaviest wild cat after Jaguar.
Mountain Lion Facts For Kids
The shoulder height of cougar measures around 60 – 90 cm (24 – 35 inches).
The male lions are 2.4 metres (7.9 feet) long and the length of the female measure at 2.05 m (6.7 feet).
The cougar has a 63 – 95 cm (25 – 37 inches) long tail.
The weight of the cougar is about 53 – 100 kg (115 – 220 pounds), together with an average weight of 62 kg (137 lb). Females weigh around 29 – 64 kg (64 – 141 lb), with an average weight of 42 kg (93 lb).
The largest mountain lion was shot in Arizona that weighed around 125.5 kg (276 pounds). The male lions inhabiting in the British Columbia weighed around 86.4 and 95.5 kg (190 and 210 pounds).
As compared to the Jaguar, cougars are believed to be less muscular; however, they can be as large as jaguars. Nevertheless, mountain lions are not included under the category of Big Cats. These types of cats are generally silent and do not roar.
The color of the coat varies from silvery-grey to reddish coupled with lighter markings on the body.
The young cougars have blue eyes just after their birth.
Mountain lions have one of the strongest claws and they are proficient in horizontal jumping from the standing position with a distance of 6 – 12 metres (20 to 40 feet). The cougars are capable to run at a speed of 55 – 72 km/h (35 – 45 mph).
These species are well adept to climb as well.
They are not regarded as the swimmers nonetheless they can swim.
What Do Mountain Lions Eat?
Mountain lions are skilled enough to ingest animals that are 500 kg. These lions predominantly eat mule deer, mice, hares, porcupine, white-tailed deer, moose, wild horses, bighorn sheep, elk, domestic livestock, cattle, sheep, hogs, armadillos, rodents, and other animals that are available in North America.
Mountain Lion Facts For Kids | Reproduction
- Females turn out to be mature at the age of 1.5 – 3 years.
- Litters normally comprise 2 – 3 cubs in the reproductive life.
- The estrus cycle is 8 day and 23 days.
- The period of gestation lasts for about 91 days.
- The young lions become proficient in hunting after 6 months. Within this period they stay with their mothers.
- The lifespan of cougar is 8 – 13 years. These animals are known to live up to 20 yearsin captivity.
Where Do Mountain Lions Live?
Mountain lions have the greatest territorial range that extends from Northern Yukon in Canada towards southern Andes. These animals inhabits in the lowland, forests, and mountainous regions. Cougars can live in open areas where vegetation is not abundant. Rim rocks, dense bush, precipitous canyons are the most preferred habitats of these lions. Cougars are the inhabitants of Alberta, British Columbia, Florida, Michigan, Upper Peninsula, Chicago, and Quebec. They are also known to reside in the Black Hills, Greenwich, Connecticut, and Wilbur Parkway.
- Argentine Puma
- Coast Rican Cougar
- North American Cougar
- Eastern South American Cougar
- Southern South American Puma
The predators of mountain lions includes American Black Bear, grey wolf, grizzly bear, and jaguar. Unless provoked, cougars seldom attack on humans.