Mountain Lions in Virginia Reports (June 2017-April 2018)

Here are the mountain lion sighting reports I have received during the last 10 months:


E. Huff writes on 7/5/2017:

Today is July 5th 2017.One week ago a customer in McLean VA reported a cat larger than a German Shepherd.Mr Jacobs stated that it was in his back yard at night and a bad odor was also noticed. 7005 Arbor La is the house number. Thanks E A Huff.

J. Lutz writes on 7/9/2017:

On information from very reliable sources, what can be described as an adult mountain lion/cougar, occurred early morning of June 19th along Guest Creek in Wise Co., Va, east of Norton along northern perimeter of Jefferson National Forest.

Peggy R. writes on 7/14/2017:

In the afternoon on July 11 my husband and I saw a large dark beige/brown animal with a very long bushy tail, longer legs similar to a coyote and a round head run across our orchard and driveway from one cornfield to the other. Not a deer, not a dog, not a cat nor a bobcat! We have seen mountain lions/pumas before both in zoos and in the wild in Utah and believe that is what we saw despite the DGIF claims that there are none in the east. We also saw the same kind of animal on our farm several years ago here in Hustle, Va. In Essex County.

It moved too quickly to get a picture so this sighting will go the way of others as “unsubstantiated”.

I’m A Believer writes on 8/15/2017:

August 13th 2017 My husband and nephews spotted one on the way to Big Island from Bedford VA – in a field beside a cow pasture. They turned the car around to get a second look and it picked up something white and ran into the woods – they said the tail was huge.

Deborah S. writes on 9/5/2017:

I live in Bedford County, VA. On Saturday, September 2nd, I was driving on the gravel road very near my house. A large cat came from the right side of the road and walked in front of my car – roughly 30 yards ahead. I saw it very vividly because it was not in a hurry at all. I know with certainty that it was a large cat – I estimate around 70 lbs. Once it crossed the road, I could not spot it in the woods. I wish now I would have looked in the trees more since that is where it probably went.

Jonathan D. writes on 9/16/2017:

I believe I just saw a mountain lion in Haysi, VA

Tan with white underbelly, large with cat like face.

It was 10pm.

Rob writes on 9/24/2017:

I have seen two in va. Once in the Shenandoah region, and again in Franklin county. Both times I was in close proximity to the animal, and both times they didnt give me a moments glance. Personally I’ve known small and large cats my entire life so I attribute my good fortune to this…however, my experience proves to me that if the eastern cougar population is indeed coming black, our encounters with the animal can be without consequence. If you understand and respect the animal, you are likely to be left alone(same goes with any animal especially large mammalian predators whom we share similarities in primal psychology and biology)…unless it is sick, threatened, protecting young, starving, or competing with you for food, most predators will leave you alone. No predator from my experience wants to waste time screwing around with something that could injure or kill it when there are plenty of elk and deer to take down. If they are back and thankfully not extinct(and from my experiences, they are in fact still around) they should be respected and protected. My experience tells me in essence: “dont be a retard and you wont be attacked” to put it bluntly…People should be vigilant about their return and be educated. But nobody should panic, nor should they instigate the desire to hunt and kill the animals if they are indeed breeding in va again. Keep in mind that any sightings including my own could be of transient lions whom are moving due to loss of habitat in western regions or possibly due to prey migration or unaccounted factors.

Frankie writes on 9/28/2017 (skeptical viewpoint):

If there were cougars there would be trail cam footage by now . Do you know how many trail cams are out there? A lot. People are seeing bobcats and coyotes or even large house cats . People believe that there are cougars and believe that they saw a cougar because they want to believe cougars are out there. They want to believe they saw a cougar because it’s the more interesting thing to believe and makes a better story. They aren’t here .

Johnny Lutz writes on 10/6/2017:

If anyone has been able to get a legitimate picture of an alleged cougar-mountain lion-puma, (all 1 and the same eastern American Lion), known for well over 150 years, to inhabit most states, east of the Mississippi River, we would like to hear from you at Our base of operations is located in Grant County, WV, but we have traveled extensively across the Appalachian Mountains from Waycross, Georgia to Bangor, Maine, seeking ‘REAL’ sightings. We are well aware of the 100s, if NOT the 1,000s of fake sightings and pictures being circulated on the internet…..We publish a Tri-yearly newsletter, “Eastern Puma Network News” within a reasonable time frame of 1st of March, July and November…..USPS Mailing Address: Eastern Puma Research Network, P.O. Box 313, Maysville, WV 26833

Over the last 18-months, multiple large cats with sweeping extended tails have been reported across Virginia from the Eastern Shore of Virginia, Maryland and Delaware to the Alleghany Mountains…..

Dena C. writes on 10/14/2017:

I live in bedford county near jeters mountain We have very secluded wooded land with a creek running through. The banks of the creek are very steep and the trees are so dense it always looks dark. I saw a large cat on the edge of our mowed land and the wooded land. What I noticed was the long thick tail. I did not research this until my orange tabby disappeared. He was a big cat 21 lbs and loved to hunt at night. I had no idea the cougar or mountain lion was rare here. I know it was not a coyote or bob cat. Just saying. I spotted him around 6:10 am

Robert Q. writes on 10/23/2017:

I live about three miles east of hillsville va, in a rural wooded area. About 9 A M on october 22 I was pilling up some brush in a wooded area near my house. I saw a very large cat about the size of a medium size dog with a long sweeping tail about 50 feet from me passing through the trees. He saw me and slowly moved off. The woods are rather dark, but what I saw appeared to be black.

Mark W. writes on 11/8/2017:

About 3 years ago I lost my dog near Flint Hill Virginia.I was staying at my cousins place on the Eastern Edge of Shenandoah Park near the base of Mount Marshall. I went to the neighbors to see if they had seen my dog and during the conversation I joked about worrying that he (the dog) might get eaten by a Mountain Lion if I didn’t find him before dark. The neighbor than told me that a month before, they had seen a Mountain Lion in the field in front of their house slowly walking along the wood line. They had no doubt what it was, light colored, about 3 feet tall, long tail.At first they couldn’t believe it but said there was no question it was a mountain lion.

Alison L. writes on 11/11/2017:

They have been in Fauquier county VA for years. Mother and baby killed all of my geese. Have been seen and heard plaster casts of tracks taken nov 2017. The tracks were 30 from my house and 15 feet from my car. They are here and the authorities know it. Bobcat my butt A bobcat doesn’t have tracks four inches wide!!!!

Seer92 writes on 11/25/2017:

I’m from Amelia county va and in 1992 I seen a cougar full size with a brown tip tale came out of the tall brown grass and was getting ready to cross the road unto a big farm area not to far from the bluegrass campground. it was coming from out of the appomattox river area.

Cecile B. writes on 12/4/2017:

December 4, 2017 – My two sisters were visiting my mother today at Elm Park Estates, in Roanoke Virginia, across from Tanglewood Mall. They had walked her down the hall and out of the window, both saw a huge tan (too big to be a domestic cat) lion looking cat walking across the sidewalk. It was tan with a long tail and a black face about 70 or 80 pounds. They have contacted the Forestry Department and the Roanoke county animal control. They both know what they saw and it wasn’t a fluke. There are mountain lions around.

David writes on 12/6/2017:

I saw one in 2010 on Goodview rd in Bedford county at 430 am. I was on my way to work and it was eating something dead on the side of the road. I saw it from a long distance as I was driving towards it, I slowed down nearly to a stop and pulled up within 15 feet of it. It glanced at me and pounced over a fence. It was strange and so surreal but it was definitely a cougar because it had a long tail and it was huge one. I saw it clear as day right next to me. About 7 miles from there in 1999, we found cougar tracks in the snow directly behind my uncle’s home in Stewartsville. They were larger than my hand. I took pics of my hand next to the tracks and sent them to wildlife management. They told me that the only cougars in va would be escaped pets, and potential offspring of them. Either way, they are out there.

Tawyna R. writes on 12/8/2017:

I saw a rather large mountain lion this morning when I went out my front door, over in my neighbor’s yard. I live on College Avenue in Harrisonburg. It was amazing! It made a sound, and ran away when It saw me. It had a light brown to reddish color, with a tail about as large is a small tree trunk that swooped down to the ground, and then curved upwards.

Darlene writes on 12/13/2017:

Today’s date is December 13,2017. So, last night I opened the kitchen door to let my German Shepherd out. My deck was still pretty covered from all the snow we had this week. I noticed everything on the deck was tossed around and thought there was no way the wind blew it around that bad. Even a large tarp had been pulled off a mattress & box-springs set that I had tucked in all the way around to ensure they were secure from the weather. The huge umbrella to my patio table had been moved from one side of the deck to the other. What I noted most were the huge paw prints that were larger than my son’s hands and my son is a really big man. The prints left imprints all the way through the snow and to the wood. This morning I let my dog out, who by the way weighs over 100 lbs. He spotted the paw prints and investigated them leaving his own prints behind that barely made an indentation in the snow and were about 1/4th the size of these huge paw prints. There was also a set of smaller paw prints identical to the larger ones. So I’m thinking mama and baby out looking for food. Now what kind of mama and baby I’m not sure. I did take pic’s and intend to hand them over to the right people. Though I’m up a bit in the country I’m still only 3 miles from town and a rural area. I’m thinking folks need to know we have at least 2 big cats on the prowl.

Leighton writes on 12/17/2017:

I have seen a big black cat that looked like a black panther Virginia . It’s Body was almost 3ft in length and tail close to the length of its body it was about out 24 inches tall. Ran out in front of me while I was drive between Highland and Bath county Va.

Bo M. writes on 12/18/2017:

on 12/17/17 I was coming home from fishing at the Cowpasture River around 4:15pm with my family. On the way home on Deerfield Valley Rd. about 3miles from Rt. 250 in West Augusta county I saw what I thought was a bear coming out of a stand of pines headed to a pond close to the woods. I stopped on the road to get a good look and to show the kids & my girlfriend. I told my son to get my binoculars out of my hunting backpack. The all black animal was approx. 120yards away slowly walking to pond dam and sat down. We had a good 4minutes to take turns looking threw the binoculars at it. We all said that’s no bear at all. The animal looked to be at least 80-100lbs (at least) then it made a quick run back towards the woods. It was obviously A very Large cat to all of us at that point, there was no mistaking that. I’ve hunted all my life since I was 10years old. I’m 41 now and I’ve never seen what I saw on Sunday evening. Four of us viewed the animal for 4-5 minutes. It was shocking to see.

Jessica F. writes on 1/11/2018:

I seen one today in Ravenswood I couldn’t belive it has to look twice went to grab my phone to take a pic and the cat slipped around the coner of the house be 4 I had time hope it comes back so I can see it again and get a picture so cool

Melissa writes on 1/12/2018:

Approximately 5 years ago I was getting on the Blueridge parkway at the end of 220 in Roanoke. I was headed up to Floyd county.

The 2 cars ahead of me came to a stop and right when I was wondering why they stopped I saw a mountain lion in front of the first car crossing from one side of the road to the other. It moved slowly at a normal pace and was huge! The folks in the other 2 cars along with me watched it cross the road and slink up the bank and into the woods. There was no mistake this was a mountain lion. I now wish I would have taken a picture with my cell because I didn’t realize they were “extinct” in VA!

Cindy writes on 1/24/2018:

While living in Big Island Va.,I encountered a mountain lion (many years ago(1982-83) on the Blue Ridge Parkway north of Buena Vista.

Brenda writes on 1/25/2018:

Towards the end of 2014, I was visiting a friend in Heathsville, VA, who lives on an inlet of the Great Wicomico. His home has a large glassed room facing the creek. I was at a table, working on my laptop. I glanced up and saw a deer feeding on the neighbors blueberries, so I watched for a while. Suddenly the deer looked up and froze in place for a few seconds, then bounded away, followed seconds later by a cougar! Chills up the spine and Marlin Perkins theme song playing in my head.

Jason H. writes on 1/29/2018:

Just got done walking my dogs tonight 1/26/2018. We go on wooded side near trees a lot and have seen Foxes, Coyotes, Deer in the woods. This is the first time I ever seen a cat almost as big as my German Shepherd. It had white around it’s mouth like a cougar not a Bobcat. It would not leave either kept going behind things like it stalking us. – Homestead Acres Chesapeake Virginia

Mimsie writes on 2/4/2018:

I will never forget the mountain lion my husband and I and our children saw about 20 years ago on Skyline Drive. The speed limit is 30 mph so we were driving along slowly with very little traffic on a Sunday afternoon in spring, late afternoon. As we rounded a bend, a mountain lion jumped from the right side of the road, bounded very low to the ground and over the low stone wall to our left. By the color, size and long tail with the curl at the tip we knew what it was. Certainly NOT a bobcat or a lynx–we know what those look like. We were stunned, it happened so fast, but there was no doubt in all the passengers’ minds what we had seen.

Kathy T. writes on 2/9/2018:

I saw one tawny in color on the side of the road on RT. 460 in Tazewell County, Virginia near Pounding Mill. It was around 6:30 pm in November of 2016. It appeared to Had just stepped out of a field and upon seeing traffic was turning back into the brush. My daughter and I got a good look at it. It was a large, beautiful creature. No bobcat.

Coralynn G. writes on 2/17/2018:

2/16/18 7pm white post virginia frederick county…put dog on leash out back and she was barking at pond behind us. I had the deck lights on and saw they were shining on a big tawny colored cat that was going left to right and disappeared into tall grasses of the field. Then I saw another at the back side of the pond drinking at the bank of the pond facing us. It’s eyes were shining from the light looking straight up at us. My dog came back up to me and we went inside. They disappeared slowly into the dark, tall grass. My black lab is 60 lbs and they were half again as big as her. And now she doesn’t want to go out there off the decking.

Mariah R. writes on 2/23/2018:

I was lost in Ivor, VA on White Marsh Rd back in the early spring of 2016 driving down the road while the sun was setting when I saw a black panther sitting upright in the middle of the road. Huge jet black cat leaped over into the brush with a tail as long as its body. I drove up to the spot and looked over expecting to see a black bear trudging off but no it was crouching in the brush. They have travelled up the east coast from FL and are here for the abundant deer population. Good eats for panthers and pumas.

Christina writes on 2/28/2018:

We have seen a mountain lion twice in Brentsville, Va. First time we saw it walking along the deer path near the back woods, it was Memorial Day 2015 at 6 am. 2 years later, we saw it again right around the same time of year. With a 100 mile territory, Only seeing it twice in two years really isn’t odd at all.

Lorrie M. writes on 3/24/2018:

On Sunday morning at app. 3am, I saw what appeared to be a black panther that had just crossed Rt.522 (Zachary Taylor Hwy} app 1 mile South of Chester Gap. Not only did I see it so did a very good friend of mine. I know what I saw and so does she

Pauline G. writes on 3/28/2018:

On Thursday, March 15, 2018, while driving north on the Skyline Drive in the very early afternoon, between Waynesboro (Rock Fish Gap) to Big Meadows (Byrd Visitor Center) we witnessed a large dark colored cat with a very long tail, approximately 4 to 5 feet in length, cross the Skyline Drive approximately 150 feet in front of our car. It had a very fluid and agile movement, coming out of the woods on the left, crossing the drive and going over the stone wall on the right side of the road. We were looking to spot deer and were amazed when the cat appeared in front of us. There was no one around at the time to report the sighting to, as most facilities were still closed for the season.

Faye M. writes on 4/1/2018:

On Friday night March 30, 2018 at 10:30 pm I was sitting in my home in Scott County, VA in the Flatwoods area. I heard a strange sound outside and stepped out to investigate. It was a wild animal call that I had not heard before so I called my aunt to come and listen. I thought it was a mountain lion call so I went inside and played a call on you tube. We both agreed it sounded identical to the mating call of the mountain lion. I learned later that other neighbors have reported hearing this call. The temperature was 35 degrees and the weather was clear.

BAR writes on 4/3/2018:

Relatives spotted a mountain lion outside their house in Hamilton-Loudoun County, not far from Leesburg on 3/23/18. Said it was big, and just stared, until it ran off. Property is partially wooded, and would be considered rural. Cows nearby, as well as chickens, dogs, etc

Nicole G. writes on 4/4/2018:

I saw a mountain lion about a year ago crossing the driveway at my house in Flatwoods, VA. It was beautiful and that’s the only time I have physically seen one but have heard them numerous times later in the evenings.

Lee B. writes on 4/4/2018:

I just saw a mountain lion off on the side of Interstate Route 85 near McKenney Va. at around 11:15 pm.

James C. writes on 4/24/2018:

It’s been approximately 3yrs ago now since I had my encounter with a mountain lion on Highway 16 crossing Walkers Mountain, Rich Valley side. I came around a curve and noticed what at first I believed to be a deer standing in the ditch on my right. Thinking it might jump out in the road in front of me I hit the brake to slow down. It was standing at the base of 10ft or so rock cliff when suddenly it made a leap and scaled the rock face with ease. I knew then it wasn’t a deer. I slammed on the brake to stop right as I passed directly beside and beneath it.I was now only about 15yds from the creature and could clearly see it standing on the ledge looking back at me
There was no doubt whatever I was looking at a 100lb plus cougar. It even in true cat fashion , flicked its 4ft long tail before trotting off up into the timber above the road. This occurred in September approximately 4:30pm.


53 comments for “Mountain Lions in Virginia Reports (June 2017-April 2018)

  1. Rebecca Pitzer
    June 29, 2018 at 4:39 pm

    My son and I saw a young mountain lion, around 70-100 lbs crossing the road.
    Rockbridge county, Rt 11 about 10 miles north of Natural Bridge, near Buffalo Creek. It was around noon.

  2. Beth H
    July 29, 2018 at 12:25 pm

    I live in wythe county Virginia and my husband coon hunts and I often go with him well one night it was raining and I kept hearing something growling and I told my husband and he kept saying your being negative well by that time the dogs treed so we walked into them and on our way back out we all heard the growl off to the right of us the dogs smelled it and tucked their tails between their legs I YouTubed a mountain lion growl and to a T that is EXACTLY what I heard and what made it worse was a week before that one of the local game wardens had showed my husband a few pics he got on his trail cam that he had over in speedwell va it was pictures of what the game warden said was a black panther which they have been spotted around the wythe county area. So we do have mountain lions and we do have black panthers. They are very large cats and like other animals it is not hard for them to migrate. You don’t believe til you see and most people want to believe that there aren’t any around here but there are.

  3. Mark
    August 4, 2018 at 11:48 am

    Four people in our neighborhood have seen a mountain lion in two separate incidents in the last two weeks. Both sightings were in daylight in good visibility. In the first sighting a zoologist saw it for a few seconds as it came out of the woods near her house. In the second sighting three people (two neighbors) spotted what was probably the same cat trailing deer near their fence line. No photographs nut their descriptions and the fact that one witness is a zoologist leads to the conclusion that this was not any other kind of cat. Our neighborhood is close to the intersection of the 288 and 6 (Patterson) in Henrico, Virginia.

  4. Douglas Campbell
    August 13, 2018 at 4:37 pm

    I spotted a cougar this morning in my neighbor’s driveway, approximety 100 pounds. I live in Powhatan in a neighborhood. I thought nothing of it as I used to see them in Arizona all the time when I lived there. I didn’t realize they were a “unicorn” animal here. People think you are crazy when you tell them.

  5. Mike
    August 31, 2018 at 11:34 am

    I can’t provide picture prof but I’m certain what I saw this morning while driving to work. At 6:40am a very large cat ran in front of my truck off Brown’s Mill Road in Campbell County, VA. The cat and it’s tail was very distinctive as it sprinted across the road and into a soybean field where I lost sight of it after about 30-40 feet. The cat’s body appeared to be roughly 3 feet long and it’s tail was similar in length to it’s body.

  6. Linda Atkinson
    September 19, 2018 at 6:43 pm

    I just saw two huge cats running across the hill in the field next to my house! Botetourt County, I have a large stretch of land next to me. I couldn’t believe it at first, but they were outlined against the yellow field, two huge cats (about the size of a large calf) and they were playing! chasing each other, scampering, so I got a good look at them. They were light brown, and you can tell how a cat moves, I’ve had plenty of cats over the years. Long tail, sleek, short hair, rounded ears, they looked like female lions. I couldn’t believe it at first, I was dumbfounded, then I thought how beautiful they were, then I got scared because my little dog saw them too, he was sniffing the air and then he stiffened and I was afraid he might run after them, so I shouted at him. I scooped up my dog and ran in the house, I wanted to run to the upstairs deck but they were gone. I feel like I have seen such an amazing thing, I’m humbled.

  7. R Carver
    September 28, 2018 at 5:52 am

    Show me a picture or proof of some kind. I always have my phone on me if I see a cougar that’s been extinct over a hundred years in Virginia. I’m gonna take a picture, especially paw prints

  8. Steve
    November 2, 2018 at 11:47 am

    They are confirmed by the authorities to be back in Tennessee.. you know, that state that borders Virginia. To think that mountain lions observe state borders and are just choosing to not cross the border over into Virginia is literally hilarious. Naysayers really just need to try using their brains every once in a while.. it’s simply just basic common sense.

  9. Nelson
    November 3, 2018 at 6:26 pm

    I live in King William County, Va. I was traveling down Sweet Hall Road around noon today. I had good visibility and the soybean field along side the road I was traveling was just harvested yesterday.

    In the field about 50 yards away, I spotted an animal I had never seen in this area. The animal was black in color, large (70lbs +) with cat like features and movement. The body appeared to be about four to five feet long, a tail about 2.5 to three feet in length but had a longer muscular neck about 1.5 to 2 feet and a round head not much larger than the diameter of its neck.

    The animal was moving over the field at a brisk pace but not running. It stopped for a moment and looked back at my vehicle stopped in the road before continuing on it’s way.

    Phone battery was dead and I was unable to get a photo. This was not a dog, cat or other animal typically seen in this area. I believe it to be a black panther after researching photos online.

  10. Jason
    November 16, 2018 at 5:10 pm

    My sister has a place in Rural Retreat and we have one on camera. It looks identical to a mountain lion or where I live a Florida panther.

    I can tell you that while visiting in May a couple of mid-sized calves had been killed and the hind quarters including the mid-section eaten on one.

    The day after discovering my brother and I were out walking the property and heard what appeared to be two cats growling at one of the kill sites in a bottom of thick vegetation, where one of the calves had been killed. This was the calf that still had the mid-section intact and semi blotted.

    We stopped to listen and heard the cats pop open the carcass and what a smell it was being down wind. We sat there for about 20 minutes, 40 yards up from the bottom and listened to them eating, before slowly backing away.

    Wish I could post the photo here to show the cat caught on the game camera. But like the others here, I can agree they are in Virginia!

  11. Brian Heffner
    November 26, 2018 at 7:22 pm

    Brian Heffner
    Rockbridge County
    VDGIF thinks I’m crazy, and some could make a good case out of that, but, I saw what I saw.
    We live on 30 acres of mostly forest. Bounded on the front by the South River and on the back by national forest. A long way to nowhere on the NF boundry.
    Last night, 10:30pm took the 4 wheeler down to level flood plain and river to see, for a friend, if there were deer bedded down there. There usually are.
    Searched all around with lights from 4 wheeler and powerful head light. Saw no deer eyes pop up. Odd.
    On the way back along river, spotted a set of eyes just above river bank, peering from behind a medium size tan log, or so i thought.
    It was strange enough that i shut off the 4 wheeler, got off and walked towards it. As I got closer, medium size tan log moved and stood up, glared at me, i drew my concealed carry (did not want to shoot MOUNTAIN LION!!!!!!!) but it spooked me. I followed it slowly maybe 10 yards.
    I am a 57 yr veteran of the outdoors. Like i said. I SAW WHAT I SAW!!!!!!

  12. Brian Heffner
    November 27, 2018 at 8:42 am

    “Sorry about your black panther party”
    From what I’ve read, a mountain lion is a puma is a cougar is a panther.
    Why do all people that see “black mountain lions” call them black panthrrs?

  13. Courtney
    November 28, 2018 at 3:38 pm

    I was running on a trail in Caledon State Park yesterday afternoon around 2pm in King George, VA. 11/27/2018. And I noticed something moving in the woods to my left about 25 yards away so I stopped and thought it was a deer. It was beige and huge and had a long tail with a dark colored spot on the end and that’s when I saw its face which was a cougar face. I have seen cougars before in Louisiana and in Arkansas while camping in the mountains so I know this is what it was. Needless to say I ran away from it. Probably not the smartest thing but it did not chase me thank God. Cougars are here in Virginia!

  14. John fox
    December 20, 2018 at 7:04 pm

    I saw a large mountain lion today dec 19 2018 . I was bow hunting in little north mountain wildlife management area , on Trimble mill trail. It jumped out of the laurel 15 feet in front of me and ran down the trail, after looking straight at me. Beautiful cat. Vdgif swears there are none here but this is the second one I have seen in my 40 years of hunting. The first was 20 couple years ago near Reddish Knob. I say they have never left Va. They may not be prvelant as they once were but there are a few still around. Very elusive creatures to start with , also nocturnal by nature , and a lot of land area at their disposal in va.may explain the thought of extinction. Let’s also add that wildlife biologists and such spend more time in front of a computer than in the woods these days. If it isn’t in the book or on google it isn’t true to them. I hunt fish and hike every possible chance I get and I have only seen two. And that was just them and I crossing paths. So how can someone who is hardly ever in the mountains expected to see one. Hell I have only ran into a game warden twice in 15 years and that was at the road once and the other at a boat landing on the Shenandoah river.

  15. Sarah
    January 8, 2019 at 11:58 pm

    I am terrified! I have always heard of mountain lions, but I thought they only existed in the West; Well, I believed that yesterday. My trail camera picked up a freaking huge mountain lion right behind my house! We live on the Powell River in Jonesville, VA. We are very secluded and surrounded by The Nature Preserve. We raise chickens, goats, and cows. I knew we have coyotes and bears, but mountain lions?? My young son plays outside frequently, now I’m terrified to let him outside again!

  16. David neece
    January 10, 2019 at 3:13 pm

    Seen one in 1980 late summer me and afriend taken his trash off to a bumpster ,we pulled up and it jumped out the side of the dumpster it just looked at us for about 5 seconds and took off

  17. Heinz Weickert
    March 2, 2019 at 4:28 pm

    Was driving home to nj from Pensacola, Florida. Was on I81 in Harrisonburg area when one leaped across the road in front of me only about 20 feet in front of my car. It was so quick I didn’t even have to slow down. Only took 2-3 leaps to cross the road. It was amazing to see.

  18. March 11, 2019 at 7:05 pm

    i live in wise county virginia, i have seen a black puma in the Pine Mountian area near Pound River. a place called Rife Gap back in 2003. it was within ten feet of me. every hair on my body stood up. it had yellow eyes and was an adult.

  19. Maria O'Brien
    March 30, 2019 at 10:25 am

    Our property is very close to Buzzard Rock Trail and nearly adjacent to the George Washington National Forest. My 8 year old son was looking out the window this morning, watching squirrels and birds on the ground outside in the back yard. All of a sudden, the birds flew away. He looked further than where he’d been looking and saw what he described later as a very big, black cat. He said the feature he most noticed was the shoulders — they looked like panthers in the zoo. His startled cry alerted my 15-year-old son, who also observed the animal. At first, my older son though bear– we see bears frequently — but noticed the long black tail and then realized it was a large cat. My younger son ran outside calling his younger brother’s name (a third son, little, had just gone outside via the side door). Both boys ran outside but by the time they were outside, the cat was nowhere to be seen.

  20. Maria O'Brien
    March 30, 2019 at 10:28 am

    To further clarify, we are in Warren County, VA outside Front Royal; very close to Fort Valley, VA.

  21. Maria O'Brien
    March 30, 2019 at 10:29 am

    Both sons agree it was the size and shape of a cougar.

  22. Troy Gustavson
    April 17, 2019 at 4:43 pm

    Fairly certain I saw a mountain lion/cougar on a farm field near the intersection of Jack’s Shop Rd. and Oldford Farm Rd. west of Rochelle, VA, around 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday, April 16, 2019. At least 100 lbs, tawny coat, ran like hell when it spotted me from about 75 yards away. (There is a God.)

  23. Marc Stinebaugh
    April 21, 2019 at 10:23 pm

    I haven’t heard of any in the area for quite a while, both times were in the 1990’s, but I saw one in Claude Moore Park in Sterling, Virginia when I was in probably Middle School, and back around the same time, but a little earlier, I remember my parent’s friends who lived in Lovettsville telling stories about how Mountain Lion’s would jump up on their shed and make a bunch of noise. I do recall that someone did get a picture of the one in Claude Moore some time after I saw it, and I remember seeing it posted in the local paper. Again, back in the 90’s. But hey, I didn’t realize we had coyotes all over the place as I’ve never seen one until the other day when I saw a dead one that was hit by a car, and heard a pack making all kinds of noise now that I live in Northern Leesburg. If we have coyotes all over and I never saw them, and people see black bears roaming neighborhoods from time to time, then it’s silly to think the cougars aren’t around also.

  24. Mary
    April 23, 2019 at 8:48 am

    I just saw a mountain lion this morning, right out of my window down on the path that I am mow to go down to the creek that runs through my property. I know it was a mountain lion because of the tail and the coatand ; it was entirely too big to be a large dog or a coyote . I laughed at my sister a couple years ago when she told me she saw one going across the field at her farm . I live in Culpeper County , off of Route 522 Sperryville Pike heading towards Sperryville Virginia.

  25. Brad
    April 23, 2019 at 7:18 pm

    I have a mother and two cubs hanging around my wood shed. Momma will lay on top of my drying wood inside the open air shed while two baby mountain lions tormented a mouse to death learning the ropes. I look at them almost nightly with my thermal scope with the neighbors horses grazing in the background less than 50 feet away. They don’t seem to worried about me like I am worried about them. The rabbit population has drop significantly and wonder what will they eat next. I have read they eat deer and have noticed the resident deer heard are not lurking around my property anymore. I always thought they were solitary animals, unless with cubs

  26. Daniel
    April 29, 2019 at 5:09 am

    I have lived in Virginia most of my life but frequent states such as Colorado to visit family and to go hunting. I’ve seen bobcats in Virginia on numerous occasions and been lucky enough to see wild cougars in Colorado and I’m familiar with the sounds they make, specifically a cougars scream, it sounds like a raspy woman screaming. In 1998 I was living in Spotsylvania Virginia about 20 miles from the main town in a rural area on a battlefield and was getting out of the car when I heard the unmistakable scream of a cougar in the distance. It was at roughly 11 pm and dead quiet out so it was the only real noise. I listened for about 15 minutes and heard it scream a second time, that sound sends shivers down your spine.

  27. J. Francis Amos, M.D.
    May 13, 2019 at 12:52 am

    On MAY 11, 2019 at 6:30 AM I was with my 11 year old hunting and fishing friend who I have mentored for 3 years. We were turkey hunting from a blind in Sontag, Franklin County, Va. After calling turkeys for over an hour with no response, we were startled with the sound of a mountain lion scream that we heard for about 5 times, coming closer each time. Suddenly Zeb grabbed the double barrel L.C. Smith with #5 shot and was shaking all over. A large mountain lion, which he had identified earlier and confirmed to me on my telephone from the internet, suddenly 80 yards away charged by the side of our stand and into some heavy brush. He was in full view of Zeb who described him as larger and longer than a dog with an impressive long swagging tail twitching as he ran. He ran into the brush and for over a minute, the brush shook impressively. We believe it was a turkey approaching our stand that he caught. We did not interrupt his meal, whatever it was, as we did not want to be dessert. My friend is very familiar with bobcats and mountain lions as he watches both on the internet. We both heard him, already identified, and he got a full view. He had stopped his cry for a short time before charging by and I was looking otherwise beside a tree and could not see. Interestingly, mountain lions have been seen for at least 5 Years in the community, seen by several people, documented on game cameras, (one printed in the Roanoke Times taken with the last year), and others hearing their screams. My brother saw a skinny, apparently lactating female, early one morning while getting his dairy cattle not 3/4 mile from our sighting and less than 1/4 mile who had multiple goats killed in a woven wire fence five or six years ago. Two wounded were identified by the vet as having been wounded by a cat due to the bite and scratch marks on the back of the neck. Other sightings have been made within a mile of this site. Coon hunters have described treeing cats and the dogs running back to them. Mountain lions with small ones have been noted in the community over the years. Despite the game commission claim of “extinction”, I believe the mountain lion is alive and well in Virginia. As a retired Family Physician of 39 years in this community and the recounting of so many patients over the years, I cannot believe otherwise.

  28. TC Leavitt
    May 24, 2019 at 12:51 pm

    This morning (5/24/19) I saw a large feline, very short solid tan fur, about 3-4′ length, estimate 50-90 pounds walking down our driveway and disappearing into the forest. We live in Bedford County VA between Moneta and Forest in a wooded/field area. It was thin but muscular and walking low to the ground. I found paw prints in loose sand in the driveway which were spaced 20″ and 29″ apart. Neighbors have reported seeing cougars in this area, but seeing for oneself is convincing cougars do exist in our area. I saw a large mountain lion while hiking in South Dakota a decade ago, but never expected to see one in VA, especially in our driveway. It was definitely not a bobcat – no spots or patterns in the coat. Pretty terrifying.

  29. Ray Tudge
    June 5, 2019 at 11:20 am

    R.Tudge June 3, 2019 Warren County Va. my daughter was out on the back deck at 11:30pm she she heard something coming up the hill through the woods screaming. She recorded it on her ipad. to dark to get a video, I matched it to the exact same sound as a female cougar screaming at night. she said it came up in the back yard she could barley make it out but then shined a flashlight on it. she said it made a louder scream she said she only could see its head, large glowing eyes from the flashlight hitting it. she said it was a cougar. she is all into wildlife and knows what they look like. I sent the recording to the Dept of inland/game and fisheries to be analyzed. waiting to hear back !

    June 20, 2019 at 4:26 am

    June 9, 2019 around 12:00 midday my husband and I were sitting in our camper at Rural Retreat VA and we noticed a large animal walking down the gravel road about 200 feet from the camper. My husband jumped up from his seat and ran outside the camper with his binoculars. At first, we thought it was a deer and then a large dog but realized it was a mountain lion. It had a long busy tail with a black tip and long body. It was white under his head and running down to its stomach. The rest of his body was a golden brown much like the color of a deer. We watched him for several minutes and he finally turned around, looked at us and went up the hill into the forest. We couldn’t believe what we were seeing but are certain it was a mountain lion. We have seen at least to dead deer remains in the past year on the property. There is a large deer population in the area and our property runs along a well stocked trout stream. I called the Game and Inland Fisheries in Marion VA and left a message with the game warden but he has never called back. There was no mistaking what we saw!

  31. David Jones
    June 24, 2019 at 11:15 am

    ON June 10TH AT APROX 7:30 AM ON RT 42 GOING TOWARDS BATH COUNTY HIGH SCHOOL MY WIFE SAW A MOUNTAIN LION WITHOUT DOUBT WALKING ALONG THE EDGE OF A FEILD BY A STREAM , she got a good look and there was no mistake so they can say that there are none if they want but they are wrong ..just sayin there was no mistake as to what she saw I was driving and she was looking out the passenger window at the scenery and was quite startled to see it much so that she bought some pepper spray a couple days later….

  32. Debbie Snead
    July 15, 2019 at 5:01 pm

    July, 13, 2019 Saturday at about 10:30 am on Bishop Creek Rd in Lynch Station, VA i had just gotten the mail out of our mailbox i turned around & looked down the road to see if any cars were coming so i could get back across the road & i saw a big black cat about 3 or 4 foot long going into our lower driveway. I went through our yard around the side of our house & when i got to my back porch door i heard a low gutteral meow down through the woods & about 5 minutes later i heard the neighbors dog barking really loud for about a minute & then it just stopped barking.

  33. Debbie Snead
    July 15, 2019 at 5:08 pm

    July 13, 2019 i am pretty sure the big black cat i saw on saturday morning going into our lower driveway was a black panther.

  34. August 23, 2019 at 10:10 am

    I have a client who has sent me a photo from his wildlife camera, would be happy to send to you. Carroll County VA . I would not want the address or owner published but would be happy to send you the photo.

  35. Blake
    September 15, 2019 at 12:48 pm

    I want to see the picture!

  36. Henry Smith
    October 3, 2019 at 9:17 am

    This past Summer, I was sitting on my back porch in the late evening. All of a sudden, I heard this harrowing, eerie, scream that was coming from the area of the rail road tracks that run about 100 yards from my house. The screams went on for about five minutes, and moved slowly as it was occurring. My dog was in the back yard and came flying up onto the porch when the screaming started. We both went inside soon after that.

    Last night, my co-workers and I were talking about experiences with animals in the wild. One of them described hearing a similar sound, out west. When I described my incident, the discussion focused on it being a Bobcat, which have been seen / killed in my area (Mechanicsville Va – North of Richmond Va). Out of curiosity, I started looking up various large cat sounds on YouTube. After listening to the Bobcat sound, it was definitely not that. However, when I played the Mountain Lion sound, I nearly dropped my phone, because that was the exact sound and scream that I heard a few months ago.

    I will be deploying a trail cam along the tracks to see if anything shows up. But, in any case, there is no doubt in my mind that the sound I heard that night was the same sound that was on YouTube for a Mountain Lion.

  37. Karin
    October 11, 2019 at 9:10 pm

    We are in Fluvanna county and 2 people have seen a big black cat with a long tail (cat the size of a doby) in the last week. These are 2 separate sightings. My husband said the dogs acted strange when they smelled the trail and jumped all 4 feet of the ground. THe bigger dogs went to follow the scent, the small dog was scared and turned back.

  38. Tanner
    November 3, 2019 at 11:23 pm

    In 2013, I saw one leaving our backyard in Manassas Virginia. Animal control came out and said it could be a big dog or an Lynx. I only saw the back end of it… Lynx don’t have long tails and dogs don’t slink like heavy cats. My sister saw it too and we are convinced it was a cougar…

    We lived along a stretch of woods but to think a cougar could get that deep into the subarbs is crazy. I’m glad reading these other posts I wasn’t imagining things

  39. George H
    December 4, 2019 at 10:55 am

    On Friday November 29th, 2019, around 7:30 PM, I saw what appeared to be a juvenile mountain lion in Chesapeake, VA. Its tail was 2-3 feet long and I estimate its weight to be at least 50 pounds. I was driving very slowly down Peaceful Road looking at a group of fawns and does on my parents’ property when it walked across the road about 30 yards in front of my truck, walking toward the deer. My first thought was that I was looking at the largest bobcat I had ever seen, but it was a solid light brown/tan color and its long tail was black at the tip. It did not walk like a house cat and had a large head and long neck, with muscular shoulders. I spent the next several hours looking for some clean tracks but the ground was very dry. 

    Within the past month, my family’s dog went missing from the yard during the night and several chickens have gone missing. I noticed that a large deer carcass I left in the yard (that I shot and cleaned last week) was dragged about 10 yards into a ditch, which has never happened before. I’ll soon be contacting the neighbors to see if anyone else has been losing animals.

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    December 4, 2019 at 1:53 pm

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  41. Rick "Dawg" Hodges
    December 5, 2019 at 6:09 pm

    I done seen me a mountain cougar in wytheville, Virginia. For almost 20 years now i have seen Charlie the cougar, like the one off that old Disney movie. He is almost 4 feet long and the tail is wilder than a one eyed buck. Kilt my dog, Blue, and spread his carcass like blue bonnet on my corn bread. I never want to seen that Satan cat ever again fer what he did to old blue in 98.

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    December 21, 2019 at 8:34 pm

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  43. MICHAEL Checking Routzohn
    January 12, 2020 at 6:01 pm

    Michael Routzohn
    Staying at the Red Roof Inn in Wythville, VA.
    Spotted to large cats…approx 60-100 lbs….in the area back of the motel area.
    These cats were spotted playing in the sun.
    One was blonde/tan and the other was more of a black/white…which dumb founded me.
    They were not stray cats/felines.
    There heads had to of been almost the size of a human.
    I always carry my binoculars and observed them for 15 min before they exited into the brush.

  44. MICHAEL Checking Routzohn
    January 12, 2020 at 6:53 pm

    Micheal Routzohn
    On futher observation….these were just 2 large felines…
    Sorry for the false post.

  45. Lee
    January 20, 2020 at 5:31 pm

    On January 9th 2020, my girl friend texted me at work and said she say a mountain lion walk down by our driveway to the backyard into the wood line. She googled pictures to be sure of what she saw. Was on the back deck. I called the game warden wildlife conflict line and they down play it like she saw a bobcat. Been in the country all our lives. Bobcats are not bigger than German Shepherd. They really need to inform the public and quit trying to convince people they didn’t see what they KNOW they saw!

  46. Lee
    January 20, 2020 at 5:32 pm

    Meant to include this was in Campbell county, Va

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    February 15, 2020 at 10:33 pm

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  48. Regan
    February 22, 2020 at 12:23 pm

    Saw one this morning at 9:45 a.m. 2/22/20 in Reston, Va. near Lake Anne. No doubt about it. Tried to get a picture but too quick

  49. Mary Phalen
    February 25, 2020 at 1:29 am

    I am an avid hiker and backpacker. Over 5000 miles avid. In all 50 states avid. In the US and Europe avid.
    I know there are Mt Lions in the Shenandoah because I saw one. It stood stock still and locked eyes w me and we just stared at each other…then she turned and swishing her long tail silently padded away up the trail. She was less than 25 feet away and her full body was clearly visible in the afternoon sunlight. I know what I saw.
    When I reported the sighting to the ranger on duty at one of the stations, he pretty much just laughed at me. Said it was a Bobcat. This was no Bobcat. It was a huge female Mt Lion. The sighting took place about 10 yrs ago and I’ve not seen another since. But I know what I experienced that day.

  50. Katrina
    April 20, 2020 at 12:54 am

    4/19/20 Giles County, Va

    So I saw my first Mountain Lion. Cougar, puma , whatever name you wish to use, today. It was around 5pm in the tree line at my house. I live in the mountains near the New River. I truly thought I had been quarantined too long and I was seeing things. I thought it was a dog but then it jumped up on some rocks and pounced over to some other rocks and I realized..that is a cat…a very BIG cat! It was beautiful, tan looking, very prominent long tail, it didnt seem to notice me or care that I was there. Before my brain could conceive what it just saw it had walked into a thicket, which used to be a garden, and that was the end of the sighting but the beginning of my research because I did NOT believe we had mountain lions in Virginia..until today! My neighbor has goats and my family told me I need to let them know and I said I know but I feel crazy saying I saw an ” extinct” animal! So thank you to ALL of you who posted here you helped me realize I am not crazy! I know what I saw..cameras going out tomorrow! I cannot stop talking about it and my family is like ok so you saw a mountain lion!!

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