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Cougar Trapping Feeds State Tourism Department Webcam

The New Mexico Tourism Department is featuring two orphaned cougar cubs, one of which was caught in a leg-hold trap, on a live web feed from Wildlife West Nature Park.

This trapping incident is still under investigation, as the cougar trapping regulations are being challenged in state and federal courts.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — On one hand – make that paw – the state of New Mexico has set up a CougarCam so YouTube viewers can watch the antics of two orphaned cougar kittens who now call Edgewood’s Wildlife West Nature Park home.

On the other, it expands the trapping of cougars starting Nov. 1, a practice as barbaric as it is indiscriminate and one that broke one of the sisters’ legs before the kittens were relegated to living in a 60- by 90-foot enclosure.

A cynic could argue it’s really just the business of supply and demand, with Game and Fish officials ensuring there will be many more orphaned and injured cougars like True and Zia for Tourism Department officials to put on 24/7 web feeds.

But is that the kind of business the so-called Land of Enchantment wants to be in? It’s really just one step short of having Game and Fish put GoPros on every animal it comes in contact with so when one is caught in a trap or snare we can all go online and watch it gnaw its paws off trying to escape.

“Leghold traps can clamp down on a dog. A nontargeted species. An endangered or protected species. A hiker. A kid. That’s why eight states, including Arizona and Colorado, have banned or placed severe restrictions on leg-hold and instant-kill traps. No other state except Texas allows cougar trapping.”

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