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    Nearly approaching to the Jaguar in size and form, but obviously distinguished from him at the first glance, by the total absence of spots, the Puma, Couguar, or, as he was once called, the American Lion, occupies the second place among the cats of the New World, over nearly the whole of which he was formerly spread, from Canada and the United States in the North, to the very extremity of Patagonia in the South. From a large portion of this immense expanse of country he appears, however, to have been of late years in a great measure, if not entirely, rooted out; and it is seldom that he is now heard of in the vicinity of that civilization, which[50] involves, as a necessary consequence, either the complete extinction, or, at least, the gradual diminution and dispersion to more secure and sheltered habitations, of all the more savage and obnoxious beasts. For his title of the American Lion he was, in a great degree, indebted to an absurd notion on the part of the early colonists, which was even shared by many naturalists, that he was, in reality, neither more nor less than a degenerate variety of that far more noble animal. This opinion has, however, long since given way before the prevalence of sounder views; and he is now universally recognised as forming a species clearly distinguishable from every other, by a combination of characters which it is impossible to mistake.
    Macrocercus Ararauna. Vieill.


    1.Viverra Rasse. Horsf.
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