Animal Database


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Range North America and South America
Scientific Classification
Kingdom Animalia
Phylum Chordata
Class Mammalia
Order Carnivora
Family Felidae
Genus Puma
Species Puma Concolor
Conservation Status
Least Concern


Until the late 1980s, as many as 32 subspecies were recorded; however, a recent genetic study of mitochondrial DNA found many of these are too similar to be recognized as distinct at a molecular level. Following the research, the canonical Mammal Species of the World (3rd ed.) recognizes six subspecies, five of which are solely found in Latin America:

Argentine Puma, Puma concolor cabrerae
Costa Rican Cougar, Puma concolor costaricensis
Eastern Cougar, Puma concolor couguar
Eastern South American Cougar, Puma concolor anthonyi
North American Cougar, Puma concolor couguar
Northern South American Cougar, Puma concolor concolor
Southern South American Puma, Puma concolor puma



Pumapard, photographed in 1904

A pumapard is a hybrid animal resulting from a union between a cougar and a leopard. Three sets of these hybrids were bred in the late 1890s and early 1900s by Carl Hagenbeck at his animal park in Hamburg, Germany. Most did not reach adulthood. One of these was purchased in 1898 by Berlin Zoo. A similar hybrid in Berlin Zoo purchased from Hagenbeck was a cross between a male leopard and a female puma. Hamburg Zoo's specimen was the reverse pairing, the one in the black-and-white photo, fathered by a puma bred to an Indian leopardess.

Whether born to a female puma mated to a male leopard, or to a male puma mated to a female leopard, pumapards inherit a form of dwarfism. Those reported grew to only half the size of the parents. They have a puma-like long body (proportional to the limbs, but nevertheless shorter than either parent), but short legs. The coat is variously described as sandy, tawny or greyish with brown, chestnut or "faded" rosettes.


Mountain Lion Species Spotlight04:52

Mountain Lion Species Spotlight

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