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Almost scared of my own yard...

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by LeafBlade12345, Nov 4, 2015.

  1. LeafBlade12345

    LeafBlade12345 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Well, I had quite a scare this weekend. Neighbor's texted, telling us to watch out for a mountain lion/bobcat that was in their yard! They woke up to growling and looked outside. The husband spotted a tail, but the woman only made out a cat shape. If the husband really saw a tail, I'm guessing mountain lion, and they sent pictures of paw prints in their yard, a little too big for any bobcat. Someone in my household also heard the cat when he got up to use the restroom at night. After narrowing it down to almost certainly a mountain lion, I was nervous enough. Taking my dog out after securing all the animals, I heard rustling in the nearby bushes. My dog, who is part hunting dog, froze, growled, then began to bark madly. I stepped back slowly, pulling my dog closer. I walked backwards to the house, got inside, and shut the door. My dog kept barking at the windows and door. Worried for the safety of my outdoor animals, I was ready to call a warden or animal control over, but then I realized that the rustling in the bushes wasn't very loud, probably not from a big animal. So, taking my dog, a flashlight, and a weapon, I shakily went back to the bushes. The rustling started again, my dog barking madly. Holding so many items at once, my grip on the leash wasn't tight enough. My dog pulled forward, the leash was pulled out of my hands, and my dog shot into the bushes. I called and called for him, desperate, shining my flashlight around. I heard growling and snarls from the bushes, but I didn't want to hurt my dog, so I did a stupid thing. I followed him into the bushes. I flashed my light over to a corner and saw.....a rabbit, my dog frantically chasing it. I have never been so relieved in my life. I leashed my dog and took him back inside, counting my lucky stars that it wasn't a mountain lion, or both my dog and I may have ended up dead. The lion's still around, so I am locking up my animals and keeping my dog leashed until the cat either moves on or is dispatched. I am debating calling a warden. I would hate for a mountain lion that is simply surviving and hasn't killed any domestic animals or humans, as far as I know, to be killed, but I'd also hate to have my family, myself, my pets and livestock, or anyone and anything killed because I didn't say anything. Anyway, I had quite a scare.
     
  2. IceAngel

    IceAngel Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Just reading your story made me scared. I also live in an area that has mountain lions. Our wardens only act if the animal prowls near schools or right down town. Generally we are not part of their food web but old, injured or starving animals will encroach on residential areas in search of easy food. Usually they will be after your pet or its pet food, so don't feed them outside.
    You could post a warning in your area on facebook. I would worry about pets and small children if there is a lion in the vicinity.
     
  3. cluckylady812

    cluckylady812 Chillin' With My Peeps

    We live in bear and mtn lion country too, and so far by containing my dogs and flocks, making our space unwelcoming, and removing temptstions, outdoor feed etc, weve been ok. Whenever i get nervous about outdoors, my husband reminds me that these animals are here, whether i see them or not, and seeing evidence doesnt change anything.the pic is a bear track from my drive way... You can predator proof as much as possible too. Instead of calling to have the animal removed, call and ask for advice. Our wildlife officers here in colorado are a great resource for living with native animals. They offer help, how to's and even rubber bullets. Keep your dog leashed, get a GOOD flash light and make noise when going out. Lions scare the crap outta me lol, but im thankful we are able to live in a wild enough area for them to thrive in. Good luck and stay safe![​IMG]
     
  4. Lady of McCamley

    Lady of McCamley Overrun With Chickens

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    Having grown up in the country with all manner of critters in them thar woods, I can say that almost always they are more afraid of you than you are of them.

    Make noise, keep the dog leashed, take away food temptations, secure your animals, call the wildlife agency for local advice as the other poster said.

    It is very rare that mountain lions will actually attack people unless cornered. Yes, they can drop and hunt, but that is very rare. Usually they just want to run away (which will scare the bejeebers out of your horse while you're riding, I can tell you.)

    LofMc
     
  5. LeafBlade12345

    LeafBlade12345 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Thanks for the advice everyone. I think I will talk to the neighborhood and warn them about the lion an keep my own pets and animals locked up and safe. I know what to do if I am attacked by a mountain lion, so hopefully I can educate some of the neighborhood people. Thank you.
     
  6. LeafBlade12345

    LeafBlade12345 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Almost immediately after posting here, I heard growling and checked the yard. No mountain lion, but it could be anywhere, in the thick bushes, oak trees, even behind the archery hay bales. I'm starting to wonder if it is time to get a license and shoot the lion. My family is in the yard all day, and I don't want to risk anything happening. For now, I will keep my guard up. Does anyone have experience tracking mountain lions?
     
  7. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    First thing I'd do is talk to your local animal control and/or DNR.
    Depending on where you live, they may want to know about it...or may already know about it.
    They can also advise you as to what's best to do to either get rid of it, they may even be willing to set traps, or discourage it from coming around.
     
  8. Ol Grey Mare

    Ol Grey Mare One egg shy of a full carton. ..... Premium Member

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    X2 on both, we had plenty of large predators where I grew up in the mountains of Idaho. ....both around the property and while hunting, camping and working (riding herd check on range cattle).....that being said, are you urban or rural? I ask as the increased urbanization of larger wildlife has started to change some of the rules with regards to their behavior.
     
  9. LeafBlade12345

    LeafBlade12345 Chillin' With My Peeps

    We are urban. We have had raccoon problems for a while now since our neighbors were feeding them. We were talking with some friends last night who live across the lake. The husband mentioned that their neighbors have seen at least half a dozen bobcats in the last few years, he even has a picture of one sitting on the hill. I'm wondering if our neighbors saw the cat for an instant and didn't actually spot a tail. I'm hoping that's the case. Anyway, I'm almost certain the growls I heard yesterday were either from my dog or the neighbor's dogs. Of course, I have no idea about what they were growling at.....
     
  10. LeafBlade12345

    LeafBlade12345 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Right now I am in the process of making a DIY quail pen for my new birds. I'm a little worried about the lion or bobcat sneaking around here though. With young children in the house and many outdoor animals, I do not want to attract such a dangerous animal if it is in fact a mountain lion. I just hope the cat, whatever it is, moves along.
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2015

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