Big Cats on the Mornington Peninsula

Please feel free to discuss anything related to these two topics.
Post Reply
SaintGuy
Approved Member
Posts: 11
Joined: Sun Feb 11, 2007 7:47 am
Position: Researcher
Location: Mornington, Victoria
Contact:

Big Cats on the Mornington Peninsula

Unread post by SaintGuy » Fri May 23, 2014 7:37 pm

I often share my beliefs with friends, clients and coworkers. I had heard of big cat sightings on the Peninsula, particularly along the backbeach at Rye. I shared this with one coworker who is young and still unexposed to the possibility of big cats. He probably passed it off as another one of my strange ramblings, to be filed away alongside my stories of conspiracies and aliens that he has also heard from me.

A few months later Ben approached me with a story of his own. A friend of his parents was jogging along a path on the backbeach at Rye early in the morning. A big, black panther like cat crossed the path ahead of him and he very quickly turned and jogged back the way he had come. His response is interesting because you wouldn't be afraid of a large feral. You would be afraid of something which has a size and ferocity that could take you down. This is one of the rare occasions when my beliefs are vindicated by the experiences of others, and it put a little glow of pride in my chest. It also indicates just how common the sightings are, which indicates a thriving population and/or a fearlessness of humans by a smaller number.

Of particular interest is the spread of big cats to the peninsula. The idea that they could have been let out here from a circus or private collection or some such is virtually impossible. The more plausible explanation is a spread from a population in Gippsland and/or the Great Dividing Range through the Dandenongs. This would have involved movement through farmland or reedy swampland. This also poses the question of how close to populated areas these beasties can live and thrive. i am reminded, for example, of foxes and their capacity to live within even the most populated areas of cities. Could we see, in the future, big cats roaming Melbourne and Sydney streets after dark? Food for thought.
Big hugs for hairy yowie babes!

User avatar
lil foot
Silver Status
Posts: 224
Joined: Sun Aug 24, 2008 4:14 pm
Position: Crypto Enthusiast
Location: melbourne, australia

Re: Big Cats on the Mornington Peninsula

Unread post by lil foot » Sun May 25, 2014 8:12 am

G'day SaintGuy
Our family had a holiday house on the base of Arthur's seat for 30 years, I remember a news paper article from around the early 80s, which triggered my interest in the subject.
As far as I can remember it was the chairlift operator or restaurant owner who saw a cougar like animal on his way down the hill.
I had never heard anymore reports of a cat in that area since.
ON THE OCCASION WHEN IM NOT WRONG, IM ALWAYS RIGHT!

SaintGuy
Approved Member
Posts: 11
Joined: Sun Feb 11, 2007 7:47 am
Position: Researcher
Location: Mornington, Victoria
Contact:

Re: Big Cats on the Mornington Peninsula

Unread post by SaintGuy » Mon May 26, 2014 3:29 pm

Hi lil foot!

I live in Mornington, so that sighting is a lot closer to home! Cats are such adaptable creatures, and I have no doubt that in the 30 or so years since that sighting and this, that they have colonised just about every available niche on the Peninsula. I am guessing that Green's Bush would be a focal point. There is plenty of game in the form of kangaroos, and Green's Bush is connected to Rye Backbeach via Cape Schank. For a big cat, Arthur's Seat and the wilderness on the north face including the old quarry land is just a hop, step and a jump away. There is a herd of semi wild goats in the quarry area, which would also make for good eating.

Thanks for the info!
Big hugs for hairy yowie babes!

User avatar
lil foot
Silver Status
Posts: 224
Joined: Sun Aug 24, 2008 4:14 pm
Position: Crypto Enthusiast
Location: melbourne, australia

Re: Big Cats on the Mornington Peninsula

Unread post by lil foot » Tue Jun 03, 2014 3:53 pm

Yes there are hundreds of roos along Main creek which drains into Bushrangers bay, where we spooked a deer one night walking back from the beach..... Well actually it spooked us as well.
If I was down that way I would keep an eye on this corridor. A few cams in this area would be a good idea
ON THE OCCASION WHEN IM NOT WRONG, IM ALWAYS RIGHT!

Post Reply