Cooperative Research Units
Education, Research And Technical Assistance For Managing Our Natural Resources
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Estimation of mountain lion density in New Mexico


October 2015 - June 2020


The goal of this study is to provide relevant population and density data for mountain lions in New Mexico that will contribute to the management plans developed by the New Mexico Department of Game and Fish. The objectives of this study are to: 1) estimate mountain lion abundance and density in replicated survey areas across New Mexico to provide additional data for deriving harvest limits; 2) compare data-derived density estimates to those used in the habitat model currently employed by NMDGF to develop harvest limits; and 3) test a remote camera-based method for estimating mountain lion abundance and density in the absence of marked individuals.

Research Products and Activities


  • Murphy, S.M., J.W. Cain III, D. Wilckens, G. Roemer, R. Lonsinger, and M. Peyton. 2017. Developing novel spatial capture-recapture survey designs for estimating management-scale cougar density in New Mexico, USA. 12th Mountain Lion Workshop, Estes Park, Colorado, USA.

Current Staff

Federal Staff: 101

Masters Students: 239

Phd Students: 154

Post Docs: 55

University Staff: 241

5 Year Summary

Students graduated: 695

Scientific Publications: 1962

Presentations: 4417



  • James CainPrincipal Investigator
  • Gary W RoemerCo-Principal Investigator
  • Rob LonsingerNon-PI Collaborator

Funding Agencies

  • New Mexico Department of Game and Fish


Cooperative Research Units Program Headquarters Cooperators

  1. U.S. Geological Survey