Cougar Cub Attacks Buffet Table

This year, National Wildlife Federation is celebrating our 75th anniversary of protecting wildlife and connecting people with nature. Yesterday, we had a staff party to celebrate this major milestone.

As NWF’s naturalist and media personality, part of my job is to do TV appearances with “ambassador animals” to get our conservation messages out to millions of Americans.  Few things inspire people to protect wildlife than getting to see the real thing, and that goes for professional conservationists as well as the average person.  So for yesterday’s celebration, I brought in some of my animal pals to give my fellow NWFers a chance to meet the wildlife they work so hard every day to protect.

As you can imagine, the animals were a big hit.  The video below is a behind-the-scenes glimpse backstage at the event to show you what it’s like to work with live animals:

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As always, I emphasize that no matter how much we work with these ambassador animals so they can be part of education programs, they are still wild animals and are not pets.

In captivity, these animals need to live in facilities with the proper permits, veterinary care, enrichment programs and professional handlers (in this case, provided by the good folks at Nickel City Reptiles & Exotics).  The cougar cub’s natural rambunctiousness as it “attacks” the buffet table, captured in the video, perfectly illustrates why.  Could you imagine this animal living in your house?  Not a good idea.

I hope the beauty of these animal inspires YOU to get (more) involved with NWF’s conservation efforts.