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Cougar Update

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While cougar sightings continue to be had in the local area, sightings have become more infrequent in September as compared to August. However, recent sightings have been reported on Hope Road and on Royston Road. No recent sightings have been reported from the Whytes Bay/Comox Lake area, or the popular trail network in the Cumberland Community Forest and adjacent lands.

Conservation Officers continue to monitor the situation and respond to reports of aggressive cougar behaviour; however, Conservation Officers have not caught any cougars to date. The public is asked to continue to report all sightings by calling 1-877-952-7277.

While heightened cougar activity in the forests surrounding the Village has been reported during summer 2014, residents are reminded that cougars may be encountered at ANYTIME and to take necessary precautions.
If you meet a cougar:

  • Never approach a cougar. Although cougars will normally avoid a confrontation, all cougars are unpredictable. Cougars feeding on a kill may be dangerous.
  • Always give a cougar an avenue of escape.
  • Stay calm. Talk to the cougar in a confident voice.
  • Pick all children up off the ground immediately. Children frighten easily and their rapid movements may provoke an attack.
  • Do not run. Try to back away from the cougar slowly. Sudden movement or flight may trigger an instinctive attack.
  • Do not turn your back on the cougar. Face the cougar and remain upright.
  • Do all you can to enlarge your image. Don’t crouch down or try to hide. Pick up sticks or branches and wave them about.

If a cougar behaves aggressively:

  • Arm yourself with a large stick, throw rocks, speak loudly and firmly. Convince the cougar that you are a threat not prey.
  • If a cougar attacks, fight back! Many people have survived cougar attacks by fighting back with anything, including rocks, sticks, bare fists, and fishing poles.

Cougars are a vital part of our diverse wildlife. Seeing a cougar should be an exciting and rewarding experience, with both you and the cougar coming away unharmed. However, if you do experience a confrontation with a cougar, feel threatened by one, or have a sighting to report immediately call the RAPP Line (BC Conservation Officer Service) at 1-877-952-7277.

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