A 100 pound adult female cougar was lurking under a deck of an East Hyrum home about 10 a.m. Tuesday, causing quite a stir in the neighborhood. The cat was spotted at 545 Glenwood when the homeowner went out to the fenced back yard and saw it.
“I got a call about 9:30. They thought they had a cougar. I thought it might be a big cat until I got there and saw it,” said Frank Christiansen, the Hyrum City Animal Control Officer. “I didn’t get that close. I just called the (Cache County) Sheriff’s Office. The sheriff’s office called DWR. They came and give it shot and took it away.”
Jim Christensen, a DWR wildlife biologist, said they were all fairly close when they got the call so they responded within 45 minutes. He said the cougar was tranquilized and taken to a remote location and released.
“She was a good-sized female. They generally will get up to 110 pounds,” he said. “It was healthy and in good shape. I expected it to be a younger and in not so good of health.”
Christensen said it’s rare but not uncommon to find cougars down this time of year we have a robust cougar population right now.
“There have been several sighted in Salt Lake recently,” he said. “We usually have several calls of cougar sightings during the year and but most are feral cats.”
He said the homeowner and several of the neighbors came up and snapped photos of the tranquilized animal.
“We do get sightings this time of year and have prepared a website to help people know how to deal with cougars,” Christensen said. Additional details can be found at https://wildlife.utah.gov/learn-more/living-with-cougars.html
The website site says, “if you encounter a cougar don’t run. Running could trigger the cougar’s predator response to chase you down. Make yourself intimidating. Make eye contact and open your jacket, wave your arms and yell.
“If you are under attack fight back.”