Oct.29 Coming Soon:The Cougar Returns to the East

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Speaker: Susan Morse of Keeping Track.

We’ve all heard of sightings, tracks in the snow, even bodies beside the highways, but have our legendary Catamounts really come back to New England? Vermont native and internationally renowned wildlife biologist and tracker Susan Morse brings her stunning photographs and research on North American cougars to Fairlee as the first in FCA’s new series of lectures on the environment and people of the Upper Valley.

Spoiler alert: There is no question about it. Cougars are not only being seen in eastern North America, some are even attempting to recolonize their former habitats. Where once it was flatly dismissed as impossibility in the so-called “developed” east, scientists have now documented cougar dispersals and even occupancy if a growing list of eastern states and provinces.

Join us for a magnificently illustrated introduction to cougar biology and ecology in the broad diversity of habitats where Sue has studied them, from Alberta to the Arizona/Mexico border. We will also get the low-down regarding the latest confirmations of cougars in the east, including the recently documented suitability of a substantial amount of wild habitats from Manitoba to Louisiana and Maine to Georgia. If not quite yet, it is only a matter of time!

Sue Morse, the founder and science director of Keeping Track, is highly regarded as an expert in natural history and one of North America’s top wildlife trackers. Since 1977, she has been monitoring wildlife, with an emphasis on documenting the presence and habitat requirements of bobcat, black bear, Canada lynx and cougar. Sue has received numerous awards for both wildlife photography and contributions to our understanding of wildlife. When not in the field conducting research, leading training programs, photographing wildlife, or managing her own forestry consulting business, Sue writes articles and books on her work and has an active schedule of public presentations