Mountain lions go out of their way to avoid wolves, according to new research done in northwest Wyoming.
The research conducted by the Teton Cougar Project finds that the cats in Jackson Hole spend a disproportionate amount of time in parts of their territory that are far from wolves and tend to distance themselves from wolves.
“If you look at what’s called the core home range, it tends to be farther from wolves than the rest of their home range,” said Patrick Lendrum, a biologist and the lead author of the study that was published in the Journal of Zoology in late May.
Individual mountain lions frequent the core areas within their home ranges the most, Lendrum said.
Because wolves select top-tier territories with the most available prey, subordinate mountain lions are being pushed away from the most productive parts of the landscape, Cougar Project team leader Mark Elbroch said.