JAMESPORT, Mo. -- A mountain lion was photographed by a trail camera on April 2 in rural Grundy County in northwest Missouri. The Missouri Department of Conservation’s (MDC) Mountain Lion Response Team confirmed the sighting on April 23 by visiting the site where the photograph was taken.
Wisconsin resident Paul Korn, who leases the land for hunting, reported the photograph to MDC. The camera was in a wooded area in southwest Grundy County. The photograph was taken about 8:45 p.m.
This is the 29th confirmed mountain lion sighting in Missouri since 1994. Earlier this year, two mountain lion sightings were confirmed in Reynolds County in southeast Missouri.
Mountain lions were once native to the state. Evidence indicates that sightings in recent decades are due to young male mountain lions dispersing from western states and wandering into Missouri, said Rex Martensen, an MDC wildlife damage biologist and a member of the Response Team. MDC has confirmed no evidence of a breeding population in Missouri.
Confirmation of a mountain lion sighting is made when there is verifiable physical evidence such as hair, scat, tracks, photos, video, a dead cougar or remains from a mountain lion feeding on prey.
Reports of sightings can be made by email to email@example.com, or by contacting local conservation agents or the Response Team at 573-882-9909, ext. 3211, or 573-522-4115, ext. 3147 or 3262.
Mountain lions are naturally shy of humans and generally pose little danger to people, Martensen said, even in states with thriving breeding populations. Although mountain lions are protected by law, Missouri’s Wildlife Code does allow people to protect themselves and their property if they feel threatened.
For more information, visit www.mdc.mo.gov and search “mountain lion.”