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Mountain lion

Since mountain lions are normally shy and stay hidden, any time you see one it should be considered potentially dangerous. This is especially true if the cat:

  • Does not leave after it sees you or…
  • Is relatively close or…
  • Continually disappears and then reappears in different places.

If you encounter a mountain lion, pay particular attention to the animal’s “body language.”

  • If the mountain lion is aware of your presence, does not pay attention to you, and is at a relatively safe distance (more than 100 yards away), be extremely cautious. The probability of attack is slight if you:
    • Avoid any rapid movements; running; or loud, excited talking and…
    • Stay in a group and keep children close to adults so they are not seen as small prey and…
    • Change direction to avoid the animal and walk or back slowly out of the area.
  • If the mountain lion has its ears up, is watching you closely, is otherwise obviously attentive to your presence, and is about 50 yards away, this is a potentially dangerous situation. The probability of an attack is unpredictable and must be assumed to be likely. You should:
    • Watch the cat at all times and never turn your back and…
    • Hold small children and keep larger children behind the adults and…
    • Move to a safer location or one above the mountain lion if possible and…
    • If you are not carrying a firearm or bow, look for sticks, rocks, or anything else to serve as a weapon and keep it on hand.
  • If the mountain lion is less than 50 yards away, has its ears laid back, and is staring intensely at you or moves into hiding without any signs of leaving, an attack may occur at any time. Prepare to defend yourself using anything available as a weapon.