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Author Topic: Is there a better way to reduce cougar numbers?  (Read 1659 times)

Offline idaho guy

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Re: Is there a better way to reduce cougar numbers?
« Reply #15 on: May 01, 2018, 05:42:59 PM »
Were lion quota numbers way lower when hound hunting was legal? I didn't live here then and don't really know anything about it. I found this article that shows harvest #'s pre-hound ban and post-hound ban.
http://www.mountainlion.org/us/wa/library/WA-R-Martorello-Beausoleil-2003-ABSTRACT-Characteristics-of-Cougar-Harvest-with-and-Without-the-Use-of-Dogs.pdf

Also looking at WDFW harvest reports, harvest #'s have been higher most years than they ever were during legal hound hunting years, 2016 being the highest ever at 277 lions.
I'm sure there's a reason for the lower numbers during the hound hunting years. Maybe it's because there were less cats because of hound hunting??
https://wdfw.wa.gov/hunting/harvest/

I would guess with permit only for dogs vs a general season there was a more limited number of hunters allowed. And if you look at the season dates for the permit only dog hunts they were pretty short. Could easily have had not great snow/tracking conditions for some of the days November to jan 15th they show. I am guessing definitely less cats at that time but less hunting opportunity with limited permits and a shorter season too.

Offline Humptulips

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Re: Is there a better way to reduce cougar numbers?
« Reply #16 on: May 01, 2018, 06:13:36 PM »
Were lion quota numbers way lower when hound hunting was legal? I didn't live here then and don't really know anything about it. I found this article that shows harvest #'s pre-hound ban and post-hound ban.
http://www.mountainlion.org/us/wa/library/WA-R-Martorello-Beausoleil-2003-ABSTRACT-Characteristics-of-Cougar-Harvest-with-and-Without-the-Use-of-Dogs.pdf

Also looking at WDFW harvest reports, harvest #'s have been higher most years than they ever were during legal hound hunting years, 2016 being the highest ever at 277 lions.
I'm sure there's a reason for the lower numbers during the hound hunting years. Maybe it's because there were less cats because of hound hunting??
https://wdfw.wa.gov/hunting/harvest/

Off the top of my head so don't shoot me if I am a year off but I think the quotas did not exist before 2004. Before that to 1996 it was wide open numbers wise but of course with no hounds. At that time I believe the Department figured to control harvest through season length
Prior to 96 to sometime in the late 80s we had the limited permits. Then before that no bag limit. Cougar became a game animal in I think 66.

I can tell you the harvest went up because the population went up. Prior to the permit hunting time period it was notable to see a cougar track. By the late 90s not so much and add another 5 to 7 years and it is ho hum.
Bruce Vandervort

Offline ctwiggs1

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Re: Is there a better way to reduce cougar numbers?
« Reply #17 on: May 01, 2018, 06:20:50 PM »
More cougars = more cougar seen/killed.

Deer drives are for whitetail.  The cougar will just stare at you while you walk under him.

Offline runamuk

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Re: Is there a better way to reduce cougar numbers?
« Reply #18 on: May 15, 2018, 09:31:48 PM »
If anyone wants to come hunt cats I have them coming out my ears. We have had 3 or 4 sightings now in camp since the end of March.  Apparently 300 noisy kids is not much deterrent. My valley is full of cats.
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Re: Is there a better way to reduce cougar numbers?
« Reply #19 on: May 15, 2018, 10:01:34 PM »
If anyone wants to come hunt cats I have them coming out my ears. We have had 3 or 4 sightings now in camp since the end of March.  Apparently 300 noisy kids is not much deterrent. My valley is full of cats.

Tons of cats in that valley. Too many.
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Offline yakimanoob

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Re: Is there a better way to reduce cougar numbers?
« Reply #20 on: May 16, 2018, 08:35:08 AM »

The initiative process should also never be used to regulate wildlife decisions.  :bash:

TTTTTHHHHHHIIIIIIIIISSSSSSSSS

Simply majority of respondents is an asinine way to regulate wildlife. 

Offline HighCountryHunter88

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Re: Is there a better way to reduce cougar numbers?
« Reply #21 on: May 16, 2018, 08:42:21 AM »
Were lion quota numbers way lower when hound hunting was legal? I didn't live here then and don't really know anything about it. I found this article that shows harvest #'s pre-hound ban and post-hound ban.
http://www.mountainlion.org/us/wa/library/WA-R-Martorello-Beausoleil-2003-ABSTRACT-Characteristics-of-Cougar-Harvest-with-and-Without-the-Use-of-Dogs.pdf

Also looking at WDFW harvest reports, harvest #'s have been higher most years than they ever were during legal hound hunting years, 2016 being the highest ever at 277 lions.
I'm sure there's a reason for the lower numbers during the hound hunting years. Maybe it's because there were less cats because of hound hunting??
https://wdfw.wa.gov/hunting/harvest/

those numbers are for hound permit harvest, in supplement to what boot hunters were shooting much like they are doing now ie; during deer and elk season.
-Matt

Offline jstone

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Re: Is there a better way to reduce cougar numbers?
« Reply #22 on: May 16, 2018, 08:55:05 AM »
Imagine the numbers for the first year on that hunters report if they brought back hounds.

Offline HighCountryHunter88

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Re: Is there a better way to reduce cougar numbers?
« Reply #23 on: May 16, 2018, 09:14:47 AM »
Imagine the numbers for the first year on that hunters report if they brought back hounds.

there would be all sorts of "hound hunters" that first year and then alot less the next lol
-Matt

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Re: Is there a better way to reduce cougar numbers?
« Reply #24 on: May 16, 2018, 09:48:23 AM »
Were lion quota numbers way lower when hound hunting was legal? I didn't live here then and don't really know anything about it. I found this article that shows harvest #'s pre-hound ban and post-hound ban.
http://www.mountainlion.org/us/wa/library/WA-R-Martorello-Beausoleil-2003-ABSTRACT-Characteristics-of-Cougar-Harvest-with-and-Without-the-Use-of-Dogs.pdf

Also looking at WDFW harvest reports, harvest #'s have been higher most years than they ever were during legal hound hunting years, 2016 being the highest ever at 277 lions.
I'm sure there's a reason for the lower numbers during the hound hunting years. Maybe it's because there were less cats because of hound hunting??
https://wdfw.wa.gov/hunting/harvest/

Off the top of my head so don't shoot me if I am a year off but I think the quotas did not exist before 2004. Before that to 1996 it was wide open numbers wise but of course with no hounds. At that time I believe the Department figured to control harvest through season length
Prior to 96 to sometime in the late 80s we had the limited permits. Then before that no bag limit. Cougar became a game animal in I think 66.

I can tell you the harvest went up because the population went up. Prior to the permit hunting time period it was notable to see a cougar track. By the late 90s not so much and add another 5 to 7 years and it is ho hum.


My dad told me stories when I was a kid about hound hunting with Cougar Sam (Sam Miller). That was during the bounty days in the 50's in northeast WA. They caught cougar but they had to go back into the mountains to find them.

I started hunting cougar with a friend in 1976. In 1977 he and I started what I now call Bearpaw Outfitters. During the 70's and early 80's we figured 1 week for a cougar hunt, if we hunted hard for 1 week we would get hunters filled out with an adult cat, sometimes we might find 3 to 5 fresh tracks in a week if the weather was in our favor. By the mid 80's cougar numbers were climbing and we were becoming more selective, we killed many record book cats in the 80's and early 90's including a Pope & Young world record.

In the 80's WDFW started a permit system and in 2 or 3 years it seemed like the cougar population doubled, I started offering 3 day cougar hunts and we were usually 100% successful. By the early to mid 90's it seems the cougar population had tripled or quadrupled, we would find 5 tracks per day on the average, my record was finding tracks of what we figured were 15 different cougar in a 24 hour period. By that time I was offering a guaranteed 3 day cougar hunt. The last full season that we cougar hunted in WA we caught 58 cougar, the season was roughly 2 months long, we caught cougar almost every day we hunted. We had 23 cougar permit holders that year, all of whom filled their tag, the other 25 cats we photographed and left in the tree.

The next year the voters voted out cougar hunting with hounds. Since that time more and more people have had cougar sightings in areas that used to never hold cougar. This whole state is full of cougar now, there used to be a lot of areas that had no cougar, today there are cougar pretty much everywhere, thus the reason boot hunters are filling the cougar quotas.

It should be noted that the decline in mule deer (the favorite food of most cougar) mirrors the increase in cougars. Back in the 50's, 60's, and 70's was the hay day of mule deer hunting in WA. With the number of predators that we have on the ground today it's nearly impossible for mule deer numbers to increase much in most areas of the state.

The cougar quotas in NE WA are ridiculously low, in GMU 105 the quota is 2, one female replaces that every other year and I would guess there might be 20 females in that unit. The quotas are based on research done by Wielgus, the controversial professor from WSU.

I do credit the WDFW Commission for attempting to increase quota numbers slightly a couple years ago, but Governor Inslee rescinded their decision.  :bash:

In neighboring Idaho, most units have hound hunting open from Dec 1 till March 31 and you can take 2 cougar per year with no quota on the total kill in many units. In spite of that IDFG says cougar numbers are still over objective in many units.
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Offline MooseZ25

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Re: Is there a better way to reduce cougar numbers?
« Reply #25 on: May 16, 2018, 11:10:53 AM »
Were lion quota numbers way lower when hound hunting was legal? I didn't live here then and don't really know anything about it. I found this article that shows harvest #'s pre-hound ban and post-hound ban.
http://www.mountainlion.org/us/wa/library/WA-R-Martorello-Beausoleil-2003-ABSTRACT-Characteristics-of-Cougar-Harvest-with-and-Without-the-Use-of-Dogs.pdf

Also looking at WDFW harvest reports, harvest #'s have been higher most years than they ever were during legal hound hunting years, 2016 being the highest ever at 277 lions.
I'm sure there's a reason for the lower numbers during the hound hunting years. Maybe it's because there were less cats because of hound hunting??
https://wdfw.wa.gov/hunting/harvest/

Off the top of my head so don't shoot me if I am a year off but I think the quotas did not exist before 2004. Before that to 1996 it was wide open numbers wise but of course with no hounds. At that time I believe the Department figured to control harvest through season length
Prior to 96 to sometime in the late 80s we had the limited permits. Then before that no bag limit. Cougar became a game animal in I think 66.

I can tell you the harvest went up because the population went up. Prior to the permit hunting time period it was notable to see a cougar track. By the late 90s not so much and add another 5 to 7 years and it is ho hum.


My dad told me stories when I was a kid about hound hunting with Cougar Sam (Sam Miller). That was during the bounty days in the 50's in northeast WA. They caught cougar but they had to go back into the mountains to find them.

I started hunting cougar with a friend in 1976. In 1977 he and I started what I now call Bearpaw Outfitters. During the 70's and early 80's we figured 1 week for a cougar hunt, if we hunted hard for 1 week we would get hunters filled out with an adult cat, sometimes we might find 3 to 5 fresh tracks in a week if the weather was in our favor. By the mid 80's cougar numbers were climbing and we were becoming more selective, we killed many record book cats in the 80's and early 90's including a Pope & Young world record.

In the 80's WDFW started a permit system and in 2 or 3 years it seemed like the cougar population doubled, I started offering 3 day cougar hunts and we were usually 100% successful. By the early to mid 90's it seems the cougar population had tripled or quadrupled, we would find 5 tracks per day on the average, my record was finding tracks of what we figured were 15 different cougar in a 24 hour period. By that time I was offering a guaranteed 3 day cougar hunt. The last full season that we cougar hunted in WA we caught 58 cougar, the season was roughly 2 months long, we caught cougar almost every day we hunted. We had 23 cougar permit holders that year, all of whom filled their tag, the other 25 cats we photographed and left in the tree.

The next year the voters voted out cougar hunting with hounds. Since that time more and more people have had cougar sightings in areas that used to never hold cougar. This whole state is full of cougar now, there used to be a lot of areas that had no cougar, today there are cougar pretty much everywhere, thus the reason boot hunters are filling the cougar quotas.

It should be noted that the decline in mule deer (the favorite food of most cougar) mirrors the increase in cougars. Back in the 50's, 60's, and 70's was the hay day of mule deer hunting in WA. With the number of predators that we have on the ground today it's nearly impossible for mule deer numbers to increase much in most areas of the state.

The cougar quotas in NE WA are ridiculously low, in GMU 105 the quota is 2, one female replaces that every other year and I would guess there might be 20 females in that unit. The quotas are based on research done by Wielgus, the controversial professor from WSU.

I do credit the WDFW Commission for attempting to increase quota numbers slightly a couple years ago, but Governor Inslee rescinded their decision.  :bash:

In neighboring Idaho, most units have hound hunting open from Dec 1 till March 31 and you can take 2 cougar per year with no quota on the total kill in many units. In spite of that IDFG says cougar numbers are still over objective in many units.

Oh the good ole days Dale.  When we had a strong ungulate population and cats and bears were managed with success.  We will not see this again in our lifetime. :twocents:
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Offline trophyhunt

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Re: Is there a better way to reduce cougar numbers?
« Reply #26 on: May 16, 2018, 11:17:52 AM »
Put them at the same level as coyotes, and put a bounty on both, including bobcats!
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Re: Is there a better way to reduce cougar numbers?
« Reply #27 on: May 16, 2018, 12:02:06 PM »
Were lion quota numbers way lower when hound hunting was legal? I didn't live here then and don't really know anything about it. I found this article that shows harvest #'s pre-hound ban and post-hound ban.
http://www.mountainlion.org/us/wa/library/WA-R-Martorello-Beausoleil-2003-ABSTRACT-Characteristics-of-Cougar-Harvest-with-and-Without-the-Use-of-Dogs.pdf

Also looking at WDFW harvest reports, harvest #'s have been higher most years than they ever were during legal hound hunting years, 2016 being the highest ever at 277 lions.
I'm sure there's a reason for the lower numbers during the hound hunting years. Maybe it's because there were less cats because of hound hunting??
https://wdfw.wa.gov/hunting/harvest/

Off the top of my head so don't shoot me if I am a year off but I think the quotas did not exist before 2004. Before that to 1996 it was wide open numbers wise but of course with no hounds. At that time I believe the Department figured to control harvest through season length
Prior to 96 to sometime in the late 80s we had the limited permits. Then before that no bag limit. Cougar became a game animal in I think 66.

I can tell you the harvest went up because the population went up. Prior to the permit hunting time period it was notable to see a cougar track. By the late 90s not so much and add another 5 to 7 years and it is ho hum.


My dad told me stories when I was a kid about hound hunting with Cougar Sam (Sam Miller). That was during the bounty days in the 50's in northeast WA. They caught cougar but they had to go back into the mountains to find them.

I started hunting cougar with a friend in 1976. In 1977 he and I started what I now call Bearpaw Outfitters. During the 70's and early 80's we figured 1 week for a cougar hunt, if we hunted hard for 1 week we would get hunters filled out with an adult cat, sometimes we might find 3 to 5 fresh tracks in a week if the weather was in our favor. By the mid 80's cougar numbers were climbing and we were becoming more selective, we killed many record book cats in the 80's and early 90's including a Pope & Young world record.

In the 80's WDFW started a permit system and in 2 or 3 years it seemed like the cougar population doubled, I started offering 3 day cougar hunts and we were usually 100% successful. By the early to mid 90's it seems the cougar population had tripled or quadrupled, we would find 5 tracks per day on the average, my record was finding tracks of what we figured were 15 different cougar in a 24 hour period. By that time I was offering a guaranteed 3 day cougar hunt. The last full season that we cougar hunted in WA we caught 58 cougar, the season was roughly 2 months long, we caught cougar almost every day we hunted. We had 23 cougar permit holders that year, all of whom filled their tag, the other 25 cats we photographed and left in the tree.

The next year the voters voted out cougar hunting with hounds. Since that time more and more people have had cougar sightings in areas that used to never hold cougar. This whole state is full of cougar now, there used to be a lot of areas that had no cougar, today there are cougar pretty much everywhere, thus the reason boot hunters are filling the cougar quotas.

It should be noted that the decline in mule deer (the favorite food of most cougar) mirrors the increase in cougars. Back in the 50's, 60's, and 70's was the hay day of mule deer hunting in WA. With the number of predators that we have on the ground today it's nearly impossible for mule deer numbers to increase much in most areas of the state.

The cougar quotas in NE WA are ridiculously low, in GMU 105 the quota is 2, one female replaces that every other year and I would guess there might be 20 females in that unit. The quotas are based on research done by Wielgus, the controversial professor from WSU.

I do credit the WDFW Commission for attempting to increase quota numbers slightly a couple years ago, but Governor Inslee rescinded their decision.  :bash:

In neighboring Idaho, most units have hound hunting open from Dec 1 till March 31 and you can take 2 cougar per year with no quota on the total kill in many units. In spite of that IDFG says cougar numbers are still over objective in many units.

Oh the good ole days Dale.  When we had a strong ungulate population and cats and bears were managed with success.  We will not see this again in our lifetime. :twocents:

Probably never again in WA!
Americans are systematically advocating, legislating, and voting away each others rights. Support all user groups & quit losing opportunity!

http://trophymaps.com "Do-It-Yourself" Hunting Maps" 
http://bearpawoutfitters.com Guided, Semi-Guided, Unguided, and Drop Camp Hunts in Idaho, Montana, Utah, and Washington. Hunts with tags available (no draw) spring bear, fall bear, buffalo, cougar, elk, mule deer, turkey, whitetail, wolf!

Offline KFhunter

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Re: Is there a better way to reduce cougar numbers?
« Reply #28 on: May 16, 2018, 12:44:32 PM »
You think there's only 20 females in 105?  I'd have guessed 100+

Offline Ridgeratt

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Re: Is there a better way to reduce cougar numbers?
« Reply #29 on: May 16, 2018, 01:41:59 PM »
You could always let the cattle rancher's deal with them when they see them.

Wouldn't count towards quota just collateral damage. Same as calf loss to cougars but on the other foot.