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14 of 79 photos
Categories & Keywords

Subcategory:Big Cats
Subcategory Detail:
Keywords:Arizona, Puma, concolor, cougar, lion, mountain lion
Photo Info

Dimensions6900 x 4600
Original file size14.4 MB
Image typeJPEG
A Cat of Many Names

A Cat of Many Names

“Puma Concolor is the Latin name for the cat of many names, including Cougar, Catamount, Painter, Panther, Puma, and Mountain lion. I can’t imagine how all these names came to be, but it’s certainly due to regional differences in the huge distribution of this cat. Ranging from Canada to Tierra del Fuego, from the coasts of both oceans to the peaks of the Appalachians, Rockies, and Andes, nearly every native culture encountered lions – contributing to the long list of names by which the animal became known to European settlers when they arrived in the Americas. One amusing folktale tells a story of Native Americans bringing pelts to trade in what is now New York City. Given the lack of manes like African lions, when the settlers questioned why only female skins were brought for trade, the natives explained that males lived far away in the mountains, playing a joke of sorts on the naïve newcomers. This is why the cat, not specific to mountain regions, came to be known as Mountain Lion.” ~ Jack Mountain

Photographed near Arizona’s Monument Valley during the early Spring, after some minor snow. While quietly waiting with my guides for my light to change, this cat came on the scene. Events like this never last as long as you would like, but I was happy to catch this image showing off both the animal and the mountain landscape before the moments were over.