Gizmo, my cat looks just like that panther. I know he could not kill a cow but his bite is deadly enough to warrant three trips to a doctor.
I've never seen a panther around here but I have seen wolves and fox. I guess it was a wolf. Nothing would surprise me. All the wildlife habitat is being destroyed and they have no place to go.
With so many wild life cameras I am not going to actually believe it until someone comes up with a picture. I have pictures of bobcats taken with my camera at night and every other animal that you can name in Georgia. As a person who raised cattle for years, I would bet it was a pack of neighbors' dogs who killed the cattle. Did the DNR put some cameras around the property to confirm this? Did they take casts of the paw prints or did they do DNA tests on the saliva? What is their proof?
I saw a black cat the size of a pit bulldog Dec. 2006. My brother was with me. I have also herd the screams but could not tell whether it was a " black" panther or a tan one. However, if you check the Statesboro Herald archives you will see stories on more than one occasion where people have gone on record claiming to have seen these cats - people including well-known local, reliable businessmen and veteran hunters.
With all due respect Deborah I don't blame you for needing proof, but I know what I saw. DNR and Steve Hein (GSU Wildlife center) say no such animal exists, but they do.
My theory is a population of jauguarundi ( otter cat from South America) that was released in Florida in the early 1900's interbred with the Florida panther, creating these dark colored cats. The jaguarundi comes in dusky gray or blackish colors.
I had a feeling back when watchdog and Jaws started the teethy snarls we had not seen the last of it,,,
Growing up, I remember Dad telling me that high pitched scream (like a woman) was a panther. So yeah, way back then we did have panthers here!
Deborah, I love "proof is in the pudding" but I also have to be flexible enough to believe in GOD so I will accept the fact panthers could be found in the area. There are also black bears, bobcats (remember those were doubted too until a man was attacked in his garage). Foxes, sure! Wolf- I would call it coyote but wolf is okay. Puma, panther. Just get off the main roads and travel the backwoodsy roads late at night,,,
Williamser, I'm hurt! (sniff sniff!) My bark is much worse than my bite.
I posted my first comment before reading the blog link posted, and saw where someone else noted the jaguarundi reference.
You can't tell the color of a cat by its scream, but those screams sure do sound like a woman being tortured or insanely angry, Williamser. The scream will definitely put those neck hairs at attention. We know there are the tan cougar/panthers here ( likely migrated from Florida) but no one has yet proven the existence of a large black feline. My eyes and memory aren't PROOF to anyone but myself. I wish someone could get a photo or live-trap one.
According to Bryan County Animal Control, it's true that one cow was killed and another wounded, and the culprit was a " big cat," although there's no proof yet the cat was black.
You mean that scream I've been hearing could be a panther. That's funny. I thought that was my daughter-in-law screaming at my son or grandson. Years ago we heard screaming and thought some one was being murdered. There was no access to property behind me except by foot. It has been cleared so much now that the raccoons don't even have any place to go. I really think it is sad.
Burke, the scream I heard on Little Lotts Creek near Old Register Road sounded like an outraged, angry, deranged female. I thought someone was being killed, until I listened closer and realized the scream was not human. each scream was followed by a series of guttural grunts. My livestock and dogs were going crazy - in fear, not normal reactions to things like bobcats and coyotes.
around here in bulloch county (pigeye)ive seen foxes, coyotes and bobcats all in different variations of what we think of as regular color and some that looked as if they were of mixed species many times--if yall can think of a way to train panthers to kill armadillos ill let them stay at my place!
WD, for someone to get a pix, they have to stop looking at ground level,, look in the trees and there on a limb you may find what you're looking for,,, an angry female-like-screaming up-a-tree and not even on pms feline!!
You all can make fun of this report if you want, but I've seen panthers twice in these parts. One night about 11 p.m. I was driving the back way from Richmond Hill to Ft. Stewart and saw what I first thought was a deer lying down on the right side of the road. I slowed down thinking the deer would jump up and run into my car. That's when it slowly stood up. It was a "buff" color panther that looked right our of the old "Wild Kingdom" videos. By then, I'd almost stopped and was about 20 yards from the cat who looked annoyed as he stood up. Then he rolled out that long tail that looked like a "mountain lion" when he curled it toward his head. This cat was really big. As it walked calmly off into the woods, he knew he was king of the woods around here. I saw another similar size buff color cat about two years later as he was walking across hwy 67 between Hinesville and Fort Stewart. Again, it was after dark but I know what I saw in the headlights. No, I haven't been taken by aliens for experiments and I wasn't drunk, etc.
My husband was stationed at Ft. Stewart way back in 1958-59-60 and they were in field a lot on maneuvers and saw all kinds of animals. That is the largest Military installation east of Mississippi.
You know what really gripes my butt? An arrogant DNR ranger who tells me what we have seen is a "black coyote."
Anybody with one eye and half sense can tell a CANINE from a FELINE, and to be told I saw a coyote when I know I saw a CAT is highly insulting!!
I didn't know there was black coyotes. I think you are right, Watchdog. Anyone can tell the difference between a cat and a canine.
About 15 years ago a friend of mine had a horse injured - five deep, surgical-grade, straight cuts horizontally down the horse's side, evenly spaced apart, with the three center cuts longer than the outer cuts.
This woman was pure country, no nonsense, had owned horses for 30 years and grew up hunting. When the DNR ranger told her a coyote or dog did that damage, she told him what she thought of him in words I can't use here.
It was this same man who told me " what people are thinking are black panthers are really coyotes in a black phase." I thought he was full of it.
About six years ago I saw a black coyote on Nesmith Road just off Williams Road. It was NOT a domestic dog - anyone with any savvy at all can tell the difference between a domestic animal and a wild one. This was a COYOTE - but almost solid black,with just a bit of gray. I felt privileged to have seen it. It was only about 50 yards away in full morning light.
The first instinct most people have when seeing anything not domesticated is "KILL IT." My moto is, "if it ain't bothering me or my animals, leave it alone." My daughter-in-law walked out my front door one day last week and there was a green garden snake on my porch. She freaked out. I just got the broom and ran in down in a crack between the deck boards. Let it eat bugs.
I saw one of these big black cats laying in the middle of the road dead on Nevils-Daisy Road in the middle of the day a couple of years ago. I was told that these are actually some type of cougar, I don't know. To me it's just another "wildcat" of a different color...lol
TD if you had only reported that!! It would be the " proof" needed that these creatures exist.
Isn't it interesting that so many of us " regular" bloggers have seen "big cats" in the area?
It is interesting that the big cats are here. I've seen bobcats a number of times, but never a panther. In reading online, cougers and bobcats are close relatives.
I don't get why the DNR is denying that this happened now. From what I'm told, they weren't denying it at the scene.
If you look at that very long blog at the link I posted, in almost every case where someone saw a panther, the DNR dismissed it. Maybe they don't want to panic anyone. But denial is NOT the way to go in my opinion.
You are right about that scream - it is chilling and electrifying all at once - and LOUD.
I sure hope they can get a photo, but if the panther is just passing through, it could be too late. You are right - don't know what color it is - that's just the way the story was told to me.
I read where a few panthers were released in south Georgia years ago as an experiment to see if they could survive - in an attempt to expand their range because they are endangered. The animals were tagged and tracked, and eventually removed.
I'm told they have a very large territorial range, and one of the tagged panthers was tracked 200 miles from here and back - and not one person ever saw it in all that time. So it follows that they could be here and remain out of sight.
It just occurred to me that maybe the DNR is trying to protect the panther. (I hope anyway.) Maybe they are trying to prevent trophy hunters from stalking and killing it.
I'm with Burke on leaving them alone.
My "sighting" was about 15 years ago. It was about dark-thirty one evening and I was on Highway 80 between the Stilson Country Corner and Woodyard Rd. A very large and very black animal passed in front of me and crouched down on the side of the road and faced the road. I thought this was odd and decided to take a look at it, as I had slowed to practically a stop, I shined the headlights of my car on it. This animal had a very large cat-like head, glowing eyes and was what I estimate to be the size of two labrador dogs. As I sat looking at it and it at me, I happened to think, "this can't be what I think it is", then I thought,"well hell, if it is, why am I sitting here looking at it when it appears that it is ready to jump on my car?" I got the heck out of there and never told a soul, until...about there years later, a friend of mine and I were on Mud Road between McElveen Road and Highway 80. As we passed a little creek, she made the following comment, "I saw a panther right here". I looked at her and asked her to elaborate. She described the same animal I had seen three years prior. When I relayed all of this information to a DNR officer, I got what appears to be the standard protocol answer when it comes to this type of report: There are no large black cats in this area.
I know what I saw that night, it wasn't a dog, a house cat, a pig, bear or coyote. It was a BIG ASS CAT.