List of Mountain Lion Attacks On People in the U.S. and Canada

by Helen McGinnis

I have been keeping track of cougar attacks in the US and Canada going back to 2000 that are reported by the media or published in books and articles. I am mainly interested in the number of attacks, their approximate locations, and what was done to thwart potential attacks.

I define an attack as an incident in which a wild cougar inflicts an injury or fatality on a human, anything from a scratch to a fatality. Injuries incurred when someone is scratched or otherwise harmed while rescuing their dog does not count.

Fig. 1 gives a map of attack locations from 2000 to 2013.

Fig. 1. Map of all attack locations from 2000 to 2013. The heavy black line denotes the approximate range of cougars after they were extirpated in the Midwest and East, but before recolonization of parts of South Dakota, possibly North Dakota, and Nebraska began, outlined in thin black lines. There are now two more small recolonized areas in Nebraska not yet shown on the map. Click on the map for a larger version.

My list of attacks from 2000 to date is given in the linked Word document.

I also keep track of thwarted attacks, in which it appears that the lion would have attacked if action hadn't been taken. Dr. John Laundre has put the attack information, including some of the thwarted attacks, in a spreadsheet summarizing attacks from 2000 to date (this is a .csv file that can be opened in any spreadsheet program and most word processors).

See also Tom Chester's Mountain Lion Attacks On People in the U.S. and Canada.

Copyright © 2017 by Helen McGinnis.
Permission is freely granted to reproduce any or all of this page as long as credit is given to me at this source:
Comments and feedback: Tom Chester who will relay comments to Helen.
Updated 29 September 2017