After analyzing DNA obtained from fecal samples gathered in Michigan, Swanson and Rusz (2006) claimed that 83% of identified scats were from cougars, indicating to them that a population of these large carnivores existed in the state. In this paper, we identify problems with their methodology, suggest that they unreasonably extrapolated their conclusions and point out that their results are improbable, especially in light of no other evidence in the scientific literature suggesting the existence of a population of cougars in Michigan.
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Vol. 158 • No. 2