Cougar (Felis concolor)
The cougar (also known as the mountain lion) is the largest of North America's wild cats. From nose to tip of tail, a large
cougar may be as long as three metres (10 feet).
Average weight of adult males ranges from 60 to 70 kilograms (130 to 160 pounds).
Average weight of adult females ranges from 40 to 50 kilograms (90 to 110 pounds).
Adults grade in colour from yellow through reddish brown to grey, with a light belly, chin and throat.
Other distinguishing traits include short black ears and a long rounded tail tipped with black.
Kittens are yellowish, spotted with brown.
The cougar occurs in the mountain and foothill regions. Occasional sightings have been reported along river valleys east
of these zones.
Favoured habitat includes remote, wooded, rocky areas.
Deer are the cougar's main food, but it also takes other large game animals, as well as small rodents, hares and birds.
Cougars do not have a specific breeding season. Although most kittens are born in late winter or midsummer, young can be
produced at any time.
Two to four kittens are born in a well-hidden den, commonly a cave.
The female alone raises her young, the kittens remaining with her for about a year.
The cougar is classified as Secure in the current General Status of Alberta Wild Species report. See:
See details in the Alberta Guide to Hunting Regulations. To view the guide online or to order a printed copy, visit
the My Wild Alberta website at:
Skip to breadcrumb trail
Updated: Feb 25, 2010