Cougar

The "cougar," as Buffon named it, the "puma" of the Peruvians, "panther" and "mountain lion," as it is known in the United States, is another big American cat familiar to woodsmen from New England, Minnesota, and northern British Columbia southward to Patagonia; and everywhere it is so precisely uniform that the most hair-splitting systemists have been unable to subdivide its species (Felis concolor ) into local varieties. Its upper parts vary from foxy red to a dull blue, this difference in color having no reference to age, season or locality. The underparts are white; and there are no spots anywhere except that the lips and outer rim of the ear are black, and a patch of white marks each side of the muzzle. The panther was much dreaded by the early settlers of the Eastern States and by the frontiersmen settling the Mississippi Valley, who were more alarmed by its doleful screams as it wandered about in the night, than by any history of harm, for it avoided men with a greater fear than their own; nevertheless, it became a nuisance by its raids on the farmer's live stock and he killed it off, so that now pumas are to be met with only in the forested and swampy fastnesses of some of the Gulf States and in the Far West. There they still do great damage to the young animals on ranches, especially where horses are plentiful on the range. This is equally true of South America. Nowhere, however, is the puma feared by mankind as is the jaguar; on the contrary, remarkable stories are recorded, and constantly being verified by experience, not only of the cowardice of the animal, but of its apparent desire to make friends with humanity, following lonely persons without harming them, apparently merely in satisfaction of an innocent  curiosity. It is hunted usually with dogs, to escape which it will climb into a tree, and once there remain to be shot rather than come down to fight, even when the hunters are close up.