Recent biological surveys are indicating cougars are repopulating areas in central North America. It seems they're permanently set up as far as Texas / Ontario, with one individual being found all the way on the East Coast. The scientists go out of their way to assure everyone that cougars are shy and retiring, but I've read enough accounts (and observed the behavior of their much smaller cousins) to think otherwise. Ah, well. At least now Amber will have an alibi if Ron ever disappears after going out for a walk in the woods.