Survivalist Forum banner

1 - 20 of 75 Posts

·
Live Secret, Live Happy
Joined
·
15,529 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I moved to my ranch land in the Ozarks this month in 2015. We moved a small flock of red sheep, and our guardian dogs with us.
I also work as a volunteer for the Fire Dpt, meaning I help search for lost hunters in the brushy forest hills and hollows.

In the last five years, I have seen a big cross section of the local animals. The area is absolutely over run with white tail deer, feral hogs, and coyotes. I have also seen several large Black Bears in the late spring thru fall months, Raccoon, Bobcats, Grey Fox, Armadillos, and a large black cat the locals call a Panther.

I used to live in the Eastern Sierra of California, and I am familier with Mountain Lions, and Black Bears, but Panthers are new to me. Several online sources have suggested these animals simply dont exist, but I've been struggling to keep one from eating my livestock, ever since I arrived. I have seen it four times, now, and each time it is bigger and more skilled at hunting.

I dont know exactly what a Panther is, but I have figgured out what it is not. First, its not a black house cat and not a bobcat. The one I have seen weighs over 100 lbs and has a tail over half the length of its body. It is also pure black, with no trace of a spots.

These large black cats are widely seen in Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Southern Missouri, and they grow larger, and more heavily mussled than a typical mountain lion. I suspect they become specialized at hunting feral hogs, since the seem to follow the same rivers the hogs now occupy. They grow larger, and can purr like a house cat, and I suspect the panther is a black phase subspecies of the Jaguar. Since the Jags moved into west Texas 20 yrs ago, I would not be supprised if the simply followed the Red and Canadian River into my area.

The young one growing up in my area stopped harassing my sheep and goats, after he got into a fight with my large male Anatolian guard dog. Last time I saw him he was six feet long (+4 ft tail) and over 100 lbs. Damn thing was crossing my driveway about 25 yds in front of my jeep, so I am pretty sure of the size.

I asked the local game warden, and the state trapper about it, and the both reminded me that it is legal to kill any predator chasing or attacking my livestock. I was not the first person to report a Panther in the area, but they have not seen one themselves.

I have not gotten a picture or a clean shot at the anilmal, and the warden pointed out that any irrefutable proof of a new endangered species might trigger federal protection. Since I like our 12 month open season on hogs, and the three (3) month deer season, and six (6) tags per license, so if I do shoot one you will never hear about it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
34,120 Posts
Southern La too about 30 years ago. ( Damn, I'm getting old) I never saw it, but would frequently hear it on the Other side of the river we lived on.

common knowledge and many people had seen it (relatively speaking.)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,500 Posts
We have them in Alabama too. State says they dont exist. The one I saw was looked like a mountain lion. I think its a Florida panther. The males are black. Others around here including my father have seen black ones.

I went from carrying a 22 to a 357 while in the woods after seeing that big cat.

Sent from my SM-G975U1 using Tapatalk
 

·
Bugged out already
Joined
·
3,913 Posts
I recall seeing tracks and hearing them while living in the bayou prior to moving to Alaska. Though I looked for them, I never saw one. I am sure they saw me. Very illusive creatures. One night we thought we saw its eyes, but that could have been anything.
 

·
reluctant sinner
Joined
·
16,685 Posts
We had one in our neighborhood years back. He was on my neighbors porch. Ruger the akida was raising hell on the porch - he opens the door and steps out to yell at the dog. The dog doesn't even look at him. On the other side of the dog food bowl is a big black cat - he backed into the house.

A few days later the black cat jumped off the hill in front of me driving the landcruiser. He? was out pacing me running down the road. After a few hundred yards he dove off the road and into the creek bottom. I stopped, grabbed the pistol off the seat and started to get out to look - I changed my mind and drove away.

Not everyday you see a black cougar. Have seen several tan ones and even a Linx, countless bobcats.
 

·
Indefatigable
Joined
·
19,773 Posts
I haven't seen one since the late 70's in OK. A pack of us teens, all country kids, were out riding horses and we saw it up on the other side of a pond. We told the adults as soon as we got back. No one believed us until a Shetland pony had to be put down. I moved to NYC shortly afterwards, I don't remember hearing if they ever caught it or not.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,049 Posts
We have at least one locally since the State outlawed keeping dangerous wild animals. I hear that it avoids ppl and specializes in deer. Alot of deer here.
 

·
Live Secret, Live Happy
Joined
·
15,529 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
One morning before sunrise, my pyranise/lab mix was raising hell in one of my pastures, about 80 yds away. I got up and looked through the shop window, to see a Panther on the other side of the fense from him. The dog weighed about 90 lbs at the time, and the cat was longer, abut leaner than the dog. I opened to shop door to allow my five other large dogs to tear out, and surge down the driveway tword the cat.

The cat turned and jumped completely over the drive, then cleared another fense, and into the trees. The cat was blindingly fast, I believe it could outrun a quarter horse for a short distance.

After that experience, I bought a Sig 220 in 10mm with a weapons light, to carry when I check on strange noises at night.
 

·
Born 120 years too late.
Joined
·
4,134 Posts
Anyone Else have Personal Experience with a Black Panther?

AFTER a lifetime in ghetto world LE.. you have no idea what flashed before me when I read the header...

That said, While I have spent time in cat country camping I never ran afoul of them. I heard them several times but they must have sensed my lack of affinity for cats of any kind.

In Mich, even though the DNR has persisted they do not exist... last I saw there was a $50,000 fine for killing one of the nonexistent beasts.
I have seen 2 of them, one in the lower and about 5 miles from where I live, and the other I saw my Beemer riding buddy nearly run one over in the UP on the road from Seeny to Grand Marais. (folks who have been there know what a remote stretch and gorgeous country it is. You could have a thousand Bigfoots in that area and never see one.)

The people at the motel where we stayed in GM said everyone in the area knew there were big cats there but the DNR:D: They had not molested any live stock that anyone was aware of.

IF what you are seeing is a true panther, it is a Jaguar dressed in night time formal attire instead of its usual leopard type spots.
It would be a long way from home since they are based in South and Central America, but nothing says one didn't wander up north while using google maps and got sent off in the wrong direction.
They are a more aggressive critter by nature and usually bigger than our native mountain lions.

I would rather share space with the biggest grizzly than a medium size cat if not being attacked is the consideration. While even bears do not know what they are going to do next, they are much more predictable than big cats,
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
48 Posts
They are around. Black Panther were all over the Appalachians a hundred years ago, my father was almost attacked by one going to the outhouse 70 years ago at night and shot dead by my Grandfather. I grew up being told they were extinct in our area, however.
Thirteen years ago I heard what I believed were "calls" up in the mountain behind our house. That went on for a few years, then no more. Then last year, someone set up hunting camera's at about 4,000 ft. elevation in the mountains around here and caught two or three moving through that area at different times. I wish you luck dealing with the cat, and hope no one or your livestock is hurt.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,489 Posts
Wv....30 years ago. Along the Cheat River. I was backpacking through a very large patch of mountain laurel. I came upon a clearing inside of it that was scattered with deer bones and smelled like ammonia. I saw something out of the corner of my eye and when i turned to look it was a solid black panther silhouetted against the river. It was moving pretty fast along the river bank and I only saw it for about 4 or 5 seconds.

I told that story for 20 years and no one believed me. Everyone said they didn't exist here. I knew better.
 

·
junior counsel member
Joined
·
285 Posts
As a kid growing up in the sticks of Missouri I spent a lot of time in the woods.

One day when I was 7 I snuck up on a full grown black panther as it was sleeping. Snuck up as in 2 feet away from a cat that was much larger than me.

It startled awake all wide eyed, I'm sure I had the same expression, and we headed in opposite directions along the edge of the bluff.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,456 Posts
I have always read that the black panthers in the northern and eastern US are a variant of mountain lion, cougar or many other local names. They, as well as wolves, have been discounted as being nonexistent. I know one theory about NY is wolves have crossed from Canada when the river freezes and lions live in the Adirondacks. Too many people claim to have seen one or the other for many decades for me to believe they aren't around.

I have to admit, after seeing bear up close, I would not want to cross close paths with a cougar.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
I live in Alabama, I have seen one 3 different time over the years, yes they are real! I know DNR says there are not any, I know several people that have seen them.
 

·
Dog Lives Matter
Joined
·
6,147 Posts
Black Panthers are also in Arizona. I read that they are migrating up from Mexico.

I did see one a few years ago. At least I think it was a black panther. There is a wash that runs through the area where I live. A road crosses the wash. On one of my early morning walks I was approaching the wash when I saw a large, slender (everything is skinny in Arizona) black cat with a long tail bound across the road about 10 yards in front of me. He was following the wash.

It was definitely a large cat, and too slender to be a cougar. Even though the sun had not yet come up there was a street light and it looked entirely black to me.

Hikers have claimed to see black panthers in the Superstition Mountains next to Phoenix.

Jaguars are also migrating up from Mexico.

Rare jaguar seen roaming Southern Arizona mountains
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
We had a pair of large cats that traveled together on our property in north Louisiana. One was completely black and the other was tan. Both were large and of similar size. They have been seen by many locals and are responsible for killing and eating several of my brother’s dogs over the years. One night my kids wanted to sleep in a tent in the yard. My youngest daughter went into the house to use the bathroom and stepped back outside on the porch before walking back to the tent. A large black “panther” walked casually across the yard between the porch and the tent where her her brothers and sister were sleeping as it it owned the place. She and I saw the black one but the tan panther was out of sight. They changed their minds about the camp-out shortly thereafter. I never got the opportunity for a clean shot but I was always prepared for one after that.
 
1 - 20 of 75 Posts
Top