38F: Catching a Thief

Three week old cub of puma 38F.  Photographed in July 2013.

We recaptured puma 38F last week.  She’s a 4 year old female. 38F’s previous claim to fame was being the star of a great web video that was produced by San Francisco’s KQED and the eventual mother of this cute little guy… Using radio-telemetry collars, like we do on this project, requires that we periodically […]

RIP 36m – Genomics godfather to all pumas!

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Remember 36m?  This is the guy whose home range included the UCSC campus and went all the way up north close to Big Basin! One day he even decided to make a kill within view of the front steps of my office building.  Not sure who was stalking who :-). 36m also had a penchant […]

Pumas Above San Jose


A photo of a puma family above the night time lights of San Jose. This photo was captured with a motion-triggered camera by our field technician Chris Fust. The effects of urbanization and human activity are a focus of our project. We have found that human development affects where pumas choose to have dens and […]

Using Motion-triggered Cameras To Study Puma Behavior

  We have been using motion-triggered video cameras for over 4 years to study puma communication behaviors. Here is a video we captured of a mother puma and two of her playful yearling kittens. We suspect that the mother puma is 52f before we placed a collar on her. For more information on how pumas […]

Just a big kitty…


Here is 26M gettin’ down in front of one of our cameras. We stitched together this series of photos showing him rolling around on the ground, just like your cat on the front walk.

Milestone puma #50 joins the Santa Cruz Puma Project!

50M showing off his impressive claws!

The following guest post was written by Puma Project field technician Sean McCain: Today’s goal was to make a final attempt to access 19F’s den site and collar her two five-week-old kittens so we could monitor them into adulthood. This would be our final attempt because of two factors: The den was located in rough […]

Mountain lion kills deer on camera.

We recently captured this rare footage of a mountain lion killing a deer fawn in front of one of our remote cameras. Notice that the puma is holding the neck of the fawn and the fawn occasionally tries to wriggle free. This appears to be the strategy by which pumas kill their prey (at least […]

Hollywood Puma and Rat Poison


You may remember the beautiful National Geographic photo of a male puma, P-22, who lives in Griffith Park.  His territory is very close to humans, but, as far as we know, he’s never had a problem with that.  That is, until now. It turns out that P-22 has never bothered any people, but we have […]

Why did the puma cross the road?…

laurel curve

…Well, maybe why isn’t as important as how.  Thanks to the Land Trust of Santa Cruz County, the pumas of the Santa Cruz Mountains are on their way to having a safe way to cross Highway 17!  Read more about it in their press release! We’ve talked before about how habitat connectivity is a very […]

Why’s that puma snarling at the camera?

This week’s blog was co-written by Sean McCain  (one of our field techs) Ever wonder how animals communicate using scent? Enter the flehmen response. The flehmen response is a communication behavior utilized by many mammals to identify pheromones left by other animals. A horse displaying a flehmen response     Male pumas may use the flehmen response at a […]