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Black panther in Wisconsin?

Discussion in 'The Taxidermy Industry' started by PassernCaitlin, Apr 10, 2012.

  1. PassernCaitlin

    PassernCaitlin New Member

    So I wasn't exactly sure where to put this but figured this was the best place. I don't know how many of you (probably none if you are male haha) have read Laura Ingalls Wilder's "Little House" books, but in the first one in the series her father tells a story about his father being pursued and attacked by a black panther in the woods of Wisconsin, narrowly escaping harm from it. This would have taken place in the early 1800's. Has anyone ever heard of a black panther that far north? Or could it have been a black cougar? Is panther an older name for a cougar? I've always been curious about it, and I figured someone on here might know.
  2. I would bet on it being a melanistic jaguar. I read that book and several others one about Ben Lilly, hunting a killing a black panther in Nebraska.

  3. gab

    gab Active Member

    we had a black panther at the tannery for a short time years ago,and when you inverted the wet skin you could see spots like a jaguar.
  4. Black leopards and jaguars are somewhat common, so to speak. They are just color phases like a cross fox is still a red fox, just colored different. Aside from all the stories and "sightings" to the contrary, there has NEVER been a CONFIRMED black (melanistic ) cougar. And, honestly, what are the chances that a jaguar was in wisconsin at any time, 1800's or otherwise? Me thinks laura's papa saw a "normal" cougar that turned black for the same reason all the ones spotted nowadays do....................just saying!!
  5. LordRusty

    LordRusty If I agreed with you, we'd both be wrong.

    Old timey traveling circuses - back when they traveled in wagon trains, then loaded their wagons onto railroad trains - were just as apt to have escapees back in their day, as happens today with many individuals who own exotics.

    Also, the hometown of Ringling Brothers Circus is in Baraboo, Wisconsin ... so draw your own conclusions.
  6. Rick Carter

    Rick Carter Administrator

    Last week they were in Florida.