FROM JACK MCSHANE:
We all saw the purported picture of a mountain lion in the Gazette a couple of issues ago. I say purported as it turns out it was definitely not a mountain lion as the Gazette had stated. The NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation does take these pictures and reported sightings very seriously. As to the Gazette picture taken in a local area and by a trustworthy local individual, the DEC spent three days investigating the site. The team included the Region 4 wildlife biologist, our two Encon officers and the photographer himself. After a lot of effort taking measurements and study of the site and the picture, it was concluded that the feline pictured was quite small and in no way was a mountain lion. Sorry Big Foot and mountain lion devotees!
FROM DAVE RUFF:
Dave Ruff of Andes reports that on Friday, September 10 at approximately 5 pm, he saw a large cat crossing Cabin Hill Road, about a mile from where the photo in the August 2010 issue of the Gazette was taken. He was 100 to 150 feet away and watched as the animal went down a snowmobile trail, followed by a smaller cat. Dave described the larger animal as being 75 to 80 pounds with a black-tipped tail that was 2 ½ to 3 feet long. Having lived in Andes his whole life, and being a hunter since he was a boy, Dave said “I know a bobcat when I see one.” He is positive that the cat he saw that day was definitely not a bobcat. He was unable to get a photo with his cell phone as proof, but he believes the animal was indeed a mountain lion (cougar). And so the controversy continues. ~