This Dave Henderson column, in today’s Press and SunBulletin sheds some light on the “Are they or are they not” question. However, I do find fault in his assertion that “wolves” can not exist in NYS, granted not timber wolves, but the coyote/wolf cross is, in many ways, closer to the wolf than coyote and we have plenty of them. It would seem that wolves can adapt to the habitat found in NYS, so why not pumas? Likewise, he does admit the possibility of “pet” released mountain lions but does not offer the possibility of a wandering beast getting here via Canada.
In either case, I’m not 100% convinced one way or the other.
BTW, I will go along with the fact that the DEC would not, under any circumstance, release mountain lions into the state. This just isn’t going to happen. In fact, I think it is a riot that when preditors of some type show up the general public assumes a government agency is releasing them.
For example:This spring we have had a increase of “Friendly Flies” (so named because they will land on people and cannot be discouraged to leave) that are parasites on tent caterpillars. An alternate name for these is “Government Flies” and I have been told, quite seriously, that the reason they are around is that the State is releasing them as predators on the caterpillars. In truth, these flies are always around in small numbers but, since as the tent caterpillar population increases the fly population will as well just to keep up with them. Since this is the third or fourth year in the caterpillar cycle the conditions are right so the numbers of these flies have increased markedly and, given their friendly aspect, are very noticable. As soon as the caterpillar population dies back –hopefully next year–the flies will die back too. But try telling that to the conspiracy people.