BRADLEY SMOKER | "Taste the Great Outdoors"

Recipe Discussions => Meat => Topic started by: Maximus1959 on March 01, 2014, 10:03:37 am

Title: Smoked Mtn. Lion (Cougar)
Post by: Maximus1959 on March 01, 2014, 10:03:37 am
Anyone ever smoked up Cougar meat?

I had a cougar walk into me on opening day of Elk season. Scared the crap out of me (less than 30 feet). I was standing on the edge of some brush watching a couple of deer work their way up the hillside. Heard some brush crackling off to my left. Then a pause, then crashing. Out pops a very large Cougar looking at me dead in the eyes. I raised my 7mm rifle, and bang!

Soon after a couple of hunters walked in to the area. I believe the hunting pressure pushed the Cougar into me. In my 30 years of hunting, I have seen 4 Cougars in Washington State. The first one I saw was in the 1980's standing on a logging road. In 2010 I saw 2 about 1000 yards away hunting along a hillside. The fourth being the one I shot this hunting season. It is pretty rare to see them. In the past hunters could use dogs to hunt them. Washington banned that about 10 years ago. Since, the Cougar population has been going way up. More and more sightings and face to face encounters. A Cougar will kill a about 1 deer every 7 days; thus our deer populations have been dropping. Now we have Wolves, which are rapidly killing off Elk herds. In the past I would probably let the Cougar go, knowing I would probably not eat it. But knowing their population is getting out of control, I decided to harvest him. Now I need to figure out what to do with the meat. I was happy to notch my Cougar tag, but I was more interested in hunting elk. I skinned it, and boned it out. The meat has been in my freezer since late October. I guess people eat it. It doesn't sound very appetizing, but I thought I would put it out in the forum to see if anyone has tried it?
Title: Re: Smoked Mtn. Lion (Cougar)
Post by: Salmonsmoker on March 01, 2014, 11:02:36 am
Max, what part of the state is home to you? The rule of hand is predator animals are not usually good table fare for us humans, although I'm sure there are some exceptions. Bear is a little different because it's an omnivore. Wolf(dog) well, some parts of the world. :P :P :P
Title: Re: Smoked Mtn. Lion (Cougar)
Post by: ragweed on March 01, 2014, 12:30:43 pm
Probably tastes like chicken.  But seriously, I recall reading or hearing about eating Mtn. Lion and that it was good.  If I can get that brain cell working again, I'll get back to you.
Title: Re: Smoked Mtn. Lion (Cougar)
Post by: RedJada on March 01, 2014, 03:44:57 pm
 When I live in northern AZ, Did a lot of deer/elk hunting. Every year I would come across a mountain lion. Got chased up a tree once, way up the tree. It's illegal to shoot without proper tags/licenses. Not sure where your from to be able to do that....
Title: Re: Smoked Mtn. Lion (Cougar)
Post by: pokermeister on March 02, 2014, 09:51:28 am
I am sure that however you cook it, it will have some bite (I couldn't resist) ::) ::)
Title: Re: Smoked Mtn. Lion (Cougar)
Post by: hutcho on March 02, 2014, 10:20:38 am
I remember reading somewhere that its really good.

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Title: Re: Smoked Mtn. Lion (Cougar)
Post by: Maximus1959 on March 02, 2014, 02:18:19 pm
Max, what part of the state is home to you? The rule of hand is predator animals are not usually good table fare for us humans, although I'm sure there are some exceptions. Bear is a little different because it's an omnivore. Wolf(dog) well, some parts of the world. :P :P :P

I live in Graham, which is in the Southeast Tacoma area. I shot it over in Yakima area.
Title: Re: Smoked Mtn. Lion (Cougar)
Post by: Maximus1959 on March 02, 2014, 02:28:08 pm
When I live in northern AZ, Did a lot of deer/elk hunting. Every year I would come across a mountain lion. Got chased up a tree once, way up the tree. It's illegal to shoot without proper tags/licenses. Not sure where your from to be able to do that....

You can hunt them from September 1st-March 31st in Washington State, which is where I live and hunt. You can purchase a tag over the counter. You don't have to be drawn. You cannot use dogs to hunt them during the general season.

The state of Washington offers a special tag to hunt them with dogs, which is extremely limited. It takes several years of applying before you will get drawn it (around 10 years average).
.
Hunters are fighting to bring back the use of dogs during the general season, due to the population getting out of control. Cougars are now competing with Wolves for food. Some Cougars are showing up in heavily populated areas around Seattle to feed off pets etc. An 11 year old girl shot one last week, after it attempted to attack her 4 year old brother. The Cougar was way malnourished.

Wolves are the bigger problem around my parts. They are federally protected and not allowed to be hunted in Washington State. They have a limited quota hunt in Montana and Idaho, which is where they are moving in from.
Title: Re: Smoked Mtn. Lion (Cougar)
Post by: Salmonsmoker on March 02, 2014, 07:11:19 pm
Max, what part of the state is home to you? The rule of hand is predator animals are not usually good table fare for us humans, although I'm sure there are some exceptions. Bear is a little different because it's an omnivore. Wolf(dog) well, some parts of the world. :P :P :P

I live in Graham, which is in the Southeast Tacoma area. I shot it over in Yakima area.
Been through there several times. Worked on a school in the '80s.
Title: Re: Smoked Mtn. Lion (Cougar)
Post by: Maximus1959 on March 02, 2014, 10:37:35 pm
Lake Stevens is a nice area. I have lived all over the Seattle/Bellevue/Redmond area, but I grew up around the Narrows Bridge in Tacoma.
Title: Re: Smoked Mtn. Lion (Cougar)
Post by: rajzer on March 02, 2014, 10:44:32 pm
I guess if you eat cats then a cougar might be good.  I hear it can be tasty if  cubed and prepared like sweet and sour ribs.
Title: Re: Smoked Mtn. Lion (Cougar)
Post by: Salmonsmoker on March 03, 2014, 08:21:55 am
Lake Stevens is a nice area. I have lived all over the Seattle/Bellevue/Redmond area, but I grew up around the Narrows Bridge in Tacoma.
I've done a couple of drift dives in the Tacoma narrows and under the bridge. Kind of like a horizontal parachute dive freefall in the water. The current smokes through there.
Title: Re: Smoked Mtn. Lion (Cougar)
Post by: Grouperman941 on March 03, 2014, 08:50:06 am
I was a little afraid of what I might find when searching 'eating cougar' but I turned up quite a few threads on forums, including these:


http://www.outdoorlife.com/answers/survival/food-water/my-question-can-people-eat-cougars-are-they-edible-deer-rabbits-and-turk


http://ifish.net/board/showthread.php?t=236347
Title: Re: Smoked Mtn. Lion (Cougar)
Post by: Salmonsmoker on March 03, 2014, 12:12:03 pm
Good post grouper, it looks like it needs to be thoroughly  cooked like pork because of toxoplasmosis, but those who dined on it said it has good flavor.
Title: Re: Smoked Mtn. Lion (Cougar)
Post by: Smokesmore on March 03, 2014, 04:24:00 pm
What did the DNR say about shooting it? I suppose if you felt you were in danger (with 30 yards being a blink and he's on you) you would be ok.  I'm in ND and they only offer a limited amount of Cougar tags so obviously laws are different. Either way that is pretty crazy.

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Title: Re: Smoked Mtn. Lion (Cougar)
Post by: Maximus1959 on March 04, 2014, 12:48:56 am
What did the DNR say about shooting it? I suppose if you felt you were in danger (with 30 yards being a blink and he's on you) you would be ok.  I'm in ND and they only offer a limited amount of Cougar tags so obviously laws are different. Either way that is pretty crazy.

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The Department of Natural Resources (DNR) holds no weight here. I am 100% legal, as I had a tag, which I purchased over the counter. As I stated in my previous posts; they are open to hunting from Sept 1st to March 31st, as long as you purchase a tag.
Title: Re: Smoked Mtn. Lion (Cougar)
Post by: Maximus1959 on March 04, 2014, 12:55:17 am
We are regulated by the Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife. I work with them regularly and I am an avid hunter. I believe in animal preservation and giving back to the wildlife population.
Title: Re: Smoked Mtn. Lion (Cougar)
Post by: Smokesmore on March 04, 2014, 06:39:11 am
I actually read up on ND regulations after posting last night and was surprised to find out you can still pursue with dogs in my state.  From what I read there really isn't much regulation on hunting mountain lions at all. Then again there are probably a lot more Mountain Lions in Washington then in North Dakota.

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Title: Re: Smoked Mtn. Lion (Cougar)
Post by: Maximus1959 on March 05, 2014, 02:44:54 am
Most the Western States have a high Mtn. Lion (Cougar) population. It has increased dramatically since the hunting with dogs was removed 10 years ago. Yes their is a draw permit limited season to use dogs, but it is not making a dent in the populations. The wolves are their biggest threat. Wolves will kill them for turf rights. Animal politics I guess...
Title: Re: Smoked Mtn. Lion (Cougar)
Post by: BBNRules on March 05, 2014, 06:57:44 am
I see cougars everyday in Atlanta, and it it weren't for my wife I'd hunt them each and every day with or without a tag.  :)
Title: Re: Smoked Mtn. Lion (Cougar)
Post by: Smokesmore on March 05, 2014, 07:15:47 am
I see cougars everyday in Atlanta, and it it weren't for my wife I'd hunt them each and every day with or without a tag.  :)

LOLS

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Title: Re: Smoked Mtn. Lion (Cougar)
Post by: tailfeathers on March 05, 2014, 09:26:29 am
I see cougars everyday in Atlanta, and it it weren't for my wife I'd hunt them each and every day with or without a tag.  :)
In other words you have a license that prevents the hunting of cougars, but they may be freely hunted by anyone without that particular license?
Title: Re: Smoked Mtn. Lion (Cougar)
Post by: BBNRules on March 06, 2014, 09:26:18 am
In other words you have a license that prevents the hunting of cougars, but they may be freely hunted by anyone without that particular license?



In Atlanta, there are so many cougars you can't throw a baby back rib bone without hitting one.  Therefore, licenses are not needed as the herd needs to be thinned. 
Title: Re: Smoked Mtn. Lion (Cougar)
Post by: Chas. on March 19, 2014, 01:44:47 pm
Max,  I've had 2 kitties, one was good, the other was bear-bait. Depends on male or female, breeding season, what they've been living on, what time of year it is, etc, etc...
Sounds like it was fall hunting season, eh?  If he was in a good area and eating something besides old carrion, he should be palatable.
If you like mild, try a simple herbed/garlic/onion/salt marinade and an applewood or cherry smoke.
If you like strong, try a Cajun Marinade and a sharp smoke like mesquite or hickory, maybe pecan, depending on the cat.
Unfortunately, I ate my lions a long, long time ago, before I was ever interested in home smokin'.
Even back then, it weren't bad.
Let me know how it ends up?

Chas.
Title: Re: Smoked Mtn. Lion (Cougar)
Post by: STLstyle on March 19, 2014, 06:35:03 pm
I've never had cat to my knowledge but I have ate at some sketchy Chinese joints so you never know...  Let us know the results!