Editor’s Note: Officials have confirmed that the cougar originally reported in this story was, in fact, something much smaller. According to the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, “it happens more than you think.”
PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) – This year is shaping up to be a purr-fect year for cougar sightings — that is, if you make sure to keep a distance from them.
Another cougar was spotted at Cook Park Thursday evening, the City of Tigard announced just after 5 p.m. on social media.
Officials say the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife and the Tigard Police Department have been alerted and advise people in the area to “be aware of your surroundings and leash up your dogs.”
In August, a rash of cougar sightings near Cannon Beach was followed by a video of the big cats roaming the Proposal Rock Loop near the densely forested Cascade Head preserve. Just last month, another was spotted lurking in the greater Salem area.
There have been many cougar sightings all around Oregon:
- Cougar chased cyclist on Mount Hood Corridor, ODFW warns
- Cougar sighting closes Cannon Beach at Haystack Rock
- Trailblazing cat is first-known cougar to climb Haystack Rock
- At least two cougars thought to be roaming popular areas of Oregon’s North Coast
According to the ODFW’s website, cougar sightings in the state are usually rare, though it is home to more than 6,000 of the predators. The following is an excerpt of their description:
Native to Oregon, cougars range throughout the state, the highest densities occur in the Blue Mountains in the northeastern part of the state and in the southwestern Cascade Mountains. Their primary food source is deer, but they will also consume elk, raccoons, bighorn sheep, and other mammals and birds. Cougars are territorial animals and maintain home ranges of up to 100 miles. Most active at dawn and dusk, cougars are lone hunters. They are generally solitary animals, except for mothers who remain with kittens for about two years. While actual cougar sightings have increased, coyotes, bobcats and dogs are often mistaken for cougars. A cougar can be identified by its large size, cat-like appearance, consistent tan or tawny body color, and long tail. An adult cougar’s tail is nearly three feet long and a third to a half of its total length. Cougar tracks can be differentiated from dog tracks by paying attention to detail.