There are many different types of cats, but the fastest and most agile is the mountain lion. The puma, also known as a cougar or panther in other parts of the world, can be found across North America from Southern Canada to South America. They’re not actually lions at all – they’re more closely related to smaller cats like bobcats and lynxes.
Mountain lions are not small animals. They can grow to be as large as 30 ft from nose to tail and weigh up to 300 lbs. Despite their size, they’re surprisingly agile, with the ability to jump an impressive ten metres in length, three metres high or leap a distance of 12 yards (11 m).
With such agility and speed, it’s no wonder that mountain lions have been observed making incredible jumps over fences or across ravines. They use these leaps more than other cats do because they hunt deer instead of smaller prey like rodents.
Mountain lion cubs begin practising these acrobatics when just two months old so by the time they reach adulthood they’ve perfected this skill into instinctive behaviour rather than learned behaviour.