I believe the answer lies in both circumstances. As the population of Cougars dramatically increases due to requlations prohibiting hunting, and urban sprawl spreads into wildlife, we run into a situation of more frequent cougar attacks. Yes, increased numbers of Cougars means less wildlife to prey on, but cougars do not necessarily consider humans as prey. Many circumstances involve sick or weak animals looking for an easy target. Usually that target is in the form of small pets and children.
Excellent answer, I live in the Mountains and every now and then I hear about a mountain lion taking a neighbors dog and in some cases their livestock. Most of the time they are injured or sick mountain lions that do that.
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