PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Surveillance cameras captured a cougar walking on home property in the Dunthorpe neighborhood that looks as if it came from Tryon Creek State Natural Area.
The video shows the cougar walking on the property around 9:20 p.m. Sunday, the Riverdale Dunthorpe Patrol told KOIN 6 News. Residents are urged to take precautions.
A second cougar sighting happened on Tuesday morning at Tryon Creek State Natural Area. Wilson High School cross-country runners were running along a trail when one of them, who was alone on a footbridge, saw a cougar in the water.
“I was on my run that lasted about 45 minutes. In the middle of it, saw a cougar, kept on going, wasn’t afraid of it,” said Jules. “It scurried away when it saw me.”
Jules and his coach reported the sighting to park rangers. Park staff said they are keeping a close eye on kids and making sure they travel in groups. Visitors should always keep pets on leashes.
Tryon Creek Park Manager Iris Branson said the cougar spotted in Dunthorpe is probably the same one Jules saw on his run.
“It’s likely the same cat; it seems like a large, healthy adult,” Branson said. “That’s good — doesn’t mean it’s struggling or injured so it’s keeping a good distance from people.”
Tryon Creek State Natural Area is Oregon’s only state park within a major metropolitan area, about 15 minutes from downtown Portland. The park is known to have deer — which are on the menu for cougars.
A cougar — possibly the same individual — was spotted in June near Hallinan Elementary School in Lake Oswego. Dirk Lowe called police officers after the cat ran in front of his car then leaped over a fence.
The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife said if you come across a cougar, stay calm, make eye contact, back away slowly, carefully pick up any children, don’t run and, if the cougar seems aggressive, raise your arms to make yourself look bigger.
If the cougar attacks — which officials said is unlikely — fight back with rocks, sticks or any other tool handy.