Puma (Puma concolor)

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A new study has suggested that Pumas’ hunting strategies might be superior to earlier believed and they might utilise a sly hunting strategy known as garden to hunt.

Why in news?

  • A recent study revealed that Puma is using a garden-to-hunt strategy; meaning they fertilise the soil in their hunting spots with their kills to attract more prey. 
  • The animal carcasses of their prey are helping the animals create nutrient-rich hotspots that may continue to improve their future hunting success over time. 
  • These nutrients in the soil increase plant quality and attract ungulates — large mammals with hooves.
  • Decomposing ungulate carcasses deposits elevated nitrogen, carbon and other valuable elements that improve soil and plants’ chemistry and nutrient makeup.

About Puma (Puma concolor):

  • Puma is a member of the family Felidae and is also called mountain lion, cougar, or catamount (archaic).
  • It is a large brownish New World cat comparable in size to the jaguar.
  • Habitats: Pumas live in a variety of habitats, including desert scrub, chaparral, swamps, and forests but they avoid agricultural areas, flatlands, and other habitats lacking cover (vegetative or topographic). 
  • Puma has the widest distribution of any New World mammal, with a range extending from southeastern Alaska to southern Argentina and Chile.
  • Conservation status
    • IUCN: Least Concern


Q1) What are Topographic maps?

Topographic maps are detailed, accurate graphic representations of features that appear on the Earth's surface. It usually shows a geographic graticule and a coordinate grid, so you can determine the relative and absolute positions of mapped features.

Source: Secret lives of cougars: Pumas might be ‘gardening’ to attract prey to hunting hotspots