One of the intangibles benefits of completing over 15,000 rural appraisals is all the tidbits of country folklore that our appraisers have accumulated over the last 25 years. One of these is the consistent but unsubstantiated rumor of big cats living and breeding throughout southwestern Ontario.
Something that our inquisitive appraisers collectively thought earned honourable mention back in early 2015 seen here: Cougars Migration Corridors In Action
Yes, it would seem that there could be as many as 600 cougars roaming along conservation corridors in the province of Ontario. There have been sightings from the Gatineau Hills of Ottawa, along parts of the Rideau Canal, Algonquin Park, Owen Sound and as far east as along the escarpment outside Hamilton. As reported in the Orangeville Banner they have even been seen on the outskirts of Dufferin: Multiple cougar sightings reported near Dufferin County’s border
While sightings are rare and mostly unconfirmed there is a growing mountain of evidence that we are not alone. If you see a big cat, do not run but gather into a cluster and make noise. These endangered predators are normally shy and elusive creatures. They survive on deer, wild turkey and other local game.
If you are ever lucky enough to see one, enjoy the moment from a distance!