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SafariChick

Three Puma Kittens Take on the World

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In a wildlife area called Wilder Ranch in the Santa Cruz, California area, about an hour from where I live, where my husband has gone mountain biking, apparently there are pumas and a mother has made a den. The researchers who try to follow all the pumas in this area located the den when the mother was away and got to visit with and tag what have to be the cutest puma kittens ever!

 

http://santacruzpumas.org/2015/06/23/three-new-puma-kittens-take-on-the-world/

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they are so adorable. what are the chances of the mum puma smelling the human scent and abandoning the cubs? or move the cubs? hope they stay safe.

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Posted (edited)

I don't know the answers to that but I am hoping they know what they are doing and wouldn't touch the cubs if it were going to cause problems. They were wearing heavy gloves so hopefully that masks their scent.

 

Here's another article on their site about why they are collaring kittens:

 

http://santacruzpumas.org/2013/11/13/why-collar-kittens/

 

Here's a youtube video they posted previously of another mother grooming her kitten - this is at night and I assume it's a motion-activated trail camera, not someone standing there filming them!

 

Edited by SafariChick
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I don't know the answers to that but I am hoping they know what they are doing and wouldn't touch the cubs if it were going to cause problems.

 

I was surprised to see them cuddling the kittens. Makes me wonder about their research credentials.

 

But those little guys sure are cuties!

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@@Kitsafari @@Atravelynn I dunno, the post said it was Post-Doc Max Allen, technician Chris Fust, and I" ("I" is named Justine Smith but I don't know her credentials). I did ask on their Facebook page if they know whether their scent gets on the kittens and is there a concern about that? They replied to me:

 

Hi Jane - good question! We do wear gloves to try to reduce our scent that gets on the kittens, although it is still likely that the mom can detect that we had been there. With that said however, we have never had a den abandoned after one of our visits, and are confident that the moms are not disturbed enough by our presence to result in leaving their kittens.

 

 

You can see their Facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/santacruzpumas?fref=ts

 

The description of the organization is: The Santa Cruz Puma Project is a research collaboration between the University of California at Santa Cruz and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife. Since 2008, we have been tracking and monitoring pumas in the Santa Cruz Mountains.

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I've seen in other puma projects where they handle kittens and ear tag them, it didn't seem to affect things. One of the hardest things to estimate in many animals is causes of death as you just don't find dead bodies quickly enough to determine the cause of death, and this is even harder for cubs (as they'er smaller), but it's also the age class with the lowest survival rate, and thus possibly the age class with the biggest room for improvement (ie biggest gain in their protection).

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In a wildlife area called Wilder Ranch in the Santa Cruz, California area, about an hour from where I live, where my husband has gone mountain biking, apparently there are pumas and a mother has made a den. The researchers who try to follow all the pumas in this area located the den when the mother was away and got to visit with and tag what have to be the cutest puma kittens ever!

 

http://santacruzpumas.org/2015/06/23/three-new-puma-kittens-take-on-the-world/

 

~ @@SafariChick

 

What faces !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

A couple of weeks ago I was wondering what puma kittens might look like.

Thanks to you, now I know.

Those faces are really something!

Many thanks for this.

Tom K.

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No abandoned dens is a good record!

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