Ask an Opossum

By MDC | November 1, 2023
From Xplor: November/December 2023

Hi! I’m Phi, Xplor’s mail possum. I know a lot about nature. If you have a question, email me at

Q: What is the exact population of mountain lions in Missouri? Which county are they most dense in?

From Tegan and Tristan

A: To biologists, a population is a group of the same animals living and having babies in the same place at the same time. Nearly all mountain lions that turn up in Missouri are young males that have wandered from western states like Colorado and South Dakota. These wanderers don’t stay put long enough to start populations. Because lions are so rare, no county is dense with them. Shannon County, however, has had the most confirmed sightings (17) since 1996.

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This Issue's Staff

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