How this site got started
While this site may be noted for a very complete online list
and description of attacks from 1890 to the present,
Cougar Information was begun with human safety in
mind. When I discovered that I had moved into a subdivision
where lions were recently seen, though they had been absent
from the area for generations--certainly 50 years ago when
our homes were built--I began searching the internet for safety
information. Everywhere I found platitudes such as cougars
will never attack unless cornered or unless protecting their
young; they fear all humans and avoid them. I had heard just
enough reports to the contrary to keep searching.
Specifically, I was aware of
the boy killed
while just jogging southwest of us, in a similarly populated area,
on a trail used for fitness training above his school.
In reaction to the knowledge that others and I might well
be living in habitat now made inviting to mountain lions,
I researched and then published a page with
Then I found
my coauthor's attacks site
and began to expand these accounts.
Whether you believe the risk from predators is miniscule or
is an increasing one to be watched, keep in mind that, however
statistically unlikely, risk of injury or death from such as bee
stings, spider bites, lightening strikes, and lion attacks are
still additive. When you welcome the sight of a magnificent
predator into your neighborhood, realize that the risk is far
greater for children than for the adults making policies.
Please advise of any attacks not listed herein
Confirming recent attacks where victims are
Currently, victims are often attacked more severely by our
public than by the predator.
With predator victims more and more frequently
unwilling to be identified today as a result of society's
hostility toward those venturing outdoors,
researchers cannot easily verify accounts. In addition,
helpful information regarding the age, size, and fitness of the
victim may be difficult to obtain for studies. Only attacks verified
by officials or by scrupulous investigation will be reported on
confirmed pages at this site, but keep in mind that some genuine
attacks may not not be confirmed.
New book: The Cougar by Paula Wild
The Cougar, Beautiful, Wild and Dangerous takes
data from this site, prominent researchers, and first-person
accounts of cougar encounters and attacks. From this broad perspective,
the book gives the reader uncommonly informed and practical suggestions
regarding how to interact prudently with a predator that sometimes
targets humans as prey.