Tags: mountain | lions | prowl | south dakota | california

Mountain Lions on the Prowl in South Dakota and California

By    |   Wednesday, 10 Sep 2014 01:01 PM

While wildlife officers in Northern California were tracking a mountain lion that attacked a 6-year-old boy, a South Dakota sheriff's deputy shot and killed a mountain lion after the animal was spotted in a residential area.

The Associated Press reported South Dakota authorities as saying the mountain lion was spotted Monday night dragging a raccoon through the Keystone neighborhood in Pennington County. A deputy responded and found the young mountain lion in an alley behind a business.

State wildlife officials were notified because the mountain lion had killed an animal in a populated area and was still near homes. Authorities say the animal was killed after consulting with the wildlife officials.

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Near the Silicon Valley city of Cupertino, California biologists set a fourth live trap with roadkill carcasses as bait to go along with three others set Monday to help increase the chances of capturing the cougar, said California Department of Fish and Wildlife spokeswoman Kirsten Macintyre.

The injured boy was released from the hospital Monday, a day after suffering bite wounds and scratches on his head and neck while hiking with his family and others. His name has not been released.

The cat is believed to be male, Macintyre said.

"We think it is a sub-adult, a little bit older than a juvenile or not full grown. That's based on eyewitnesses and on paw prints," she said.

Hiking trails remained closed as two search teams and seven tracking dogs continued to scour the rugged terrain for the big cat for a third straight day. While the cat has not reappeared since Sunday, crews stepped up efforts Tuesday after they discovered some lion tracks Monday estimated to be about a day old, Macintyre said.

The search has been difficult at times because a number of tracks crisscross in certain spots, she added.

"That's the nature of the beast, so to speak," Macintyre said. "The dogs still have the scent of the cat. If they had lost the scent, they would have come in by now."

If found, authorities intend to kill the lion and test it for rabies.

The attack occurred about 1 p.m., which is unusual, Macintyre said.

Cougars usually prefer to hunt and travel at dusk or dawn.

"This cat is not behaving like a normal cat," Macintyre said.

Before Sunday, the most recent mountain lion attack in California was two years ago in Nevada County. A six-day search failed to turn up a lion, Macintyre said.

However, there is no timetable on this latest search, she added.

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While wildlife officers in Northern California were tracking a mountain lion that attacked a 6-year-old boy, a South Dakota sheriff's deputy shot and killed a mountain lion after the animal was spotted in a residential area.
mountain, lions, prowl, south dakota, california
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2014-01-10
Wednesday, 10 Sep 2014 01:01 PM
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