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moonspots
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PostMon Apr 15, 2019 4:21 pm 
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Kascadia wrote:

lol.gif

Ha! Now I know what jacket/pants color scheme to buy next time!  lol.gif

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zephyr
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aka friendly hiker
PostMon Apr 15, 2019 4:55 pm 
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KMarks wrote:
My son's friend was attacked and nearly gutted by a cougar in Whatcom county this last year. He was sitting overlooking a view and eating his lunch when it jumped him.  I have yet to see anyone do an interview with him.

Welcome to the site, KMarks.  I hope your son's friend is okay.

I don't recall hearing anything about this attack.  Could you please give us some more details?  How did he manage to fend it off?  Where did it happen?  What time of day and so forth? 

Did Bellingham media or Whatcom County post anything?  Thanks,  ~z
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Vertec
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PostSat May 04, 2019 1:57 pm 
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KMarks wrote:
My son's friend was attacked and nearly gutted by a cougar in Whatcom county this last year. He was sitting overlooking a view and eating his lunch when it jumped him.  I have yet to see anyone do an interview with him.

Was he carrying bear spray?

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Gregory
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PostTue Oct 13, 2020 6:29 am 
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Bootpathguy
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PostTue Oct 13, 2020 8:08 am 
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The fall colors there are absolutely beautiful  hockeygrin.gif  hockeygrin.gif  hockeygrin.gif

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Chief Joseph
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PostTue Oct 13, 2020 9:11 am 
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Just a big kitty, no worries!

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JVesquire
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PostTue Oct 13, 2020 11:24 am 
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I have a hard time imagining that I would have held the camera for that long.
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Skookum Bill
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PostTue Oct 13, 2020 11:24 am 
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Hmmm, the take-away story for me if I were to get in a similar situation is to have previously rehearsed my recorded responses to the attacking animal, as if it was going to be replayed on National Teevision. It was amusing that AFTER the cat had run away the young man began repeating Holy Cow, Holy Cow, Holy Cow, as opposed to the previous colorful profanities.
Oh, and why did it really take him so long to throw a rock?
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Noheaperture
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PostTue Oct 13, 2020 11:36 am 
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Skookum Bill wrote:
Oh, and why did it really take him so long to throw a rock?

He said, every time he bent down to try and grab a rock, the cat would lunge at him. So each of those strikes the cat made were when he attempted to “get lower” perfect example as to why one should “stay big” when encountered.

Lesson learned; carry bear spray or have a weapon handy.
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kiliki
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PostTue Oct 13, 2020 12:53 pm 
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Actually, wouldn't the lesson be, don't move toward a bunch of cougar cubs to get some video? He was moving toward them and filming for god's sake. (His excuse is that he though they were bobcats. Like a bobcat mom can't F--- someone up?). Then he turned and ran when the mom chased him.

I hate that this video has gone viral without much discussion of this. I'm sure the takeaway for a lot of people was indeed "better get a gun!" rather than, don't be a duma** so you have something to post on Instagram.


https://www.deseret.com/utah/2020/10/12/21513450/utah-cougar-mountain-lion-encounter-viral-provo-slate-canyon-attack-stalk-survive
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timberghost
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PostTue Oct 13, 2020 1:12 pm 
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Yea just like the one that tried to haul the little boy off in Leavenworth.
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Cyclopath
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PostTue Oct 13, 2020 2:08 pm 
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I put a collar with bells on kitty Bear, and he still kills too many birds.  Her figured out how to move without ringing them until the final pounce when it's too late.

Cats are masters of stealth.  Prey almost never see them coming until it's too late.  If you become cat food, it will have been a surprise.
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Cyclopath
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PostTue Oct 13, 2020 2:09 pm 
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contour5 wrote:
What about carrying a bag of live rodents? You could toss them one by one or just hurl the entire bag, to create a diversion and escape with your entrails in their proper place?

When my kitty doesn't want to eat healthy kitty food, a treat as an appetizer always works... so that would not be my first choice!   eek.gif
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Cyclopath
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PostTue Oct 13, 2020 2:10 pm 
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Cyclopath wrote:
put a collar with bells on kitty Bear, and he still kills too many birds.  Her figured out how to move without ringing them until the final pounce when it's too late.

He's made friends with two old ladies down the street.  They said he visits them sometimes and especially likes watching them feed the birds.  Demonstrating that cats have mind control as well.
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kiliki
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PostWed Oct 14, 2020 11:17 am 
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The Pantheras Puma Project had some thoughts about the encounter. It was not a stalking; she was bluff charging; his attention to keeping the cat framed in the cell phone video may have prolonged the encounter.

UPDATED WITH ADDITIONAL THOUGHTS, 13 OCT
If you haven't seen or heard about this video, caution, because it portrays what many people have nightmares about. Kyle Burgess is out for a run, and meets a mountain lion with kittens in the trail. What follows is an adrenaline-high, terrifying encounter with a mother determined to see this new threat move far from where they met.

Burgess did an amazing job of keeping his cool and making it out unscathed. He did not run, he faced the cat as he moved away, he kept up a dialog. All excellent behaviors and choices. The best thing one can do in any rare mountain lion encounter that turns scary is to make sure it knows you are a human. That's usually enough to keep the encounter brief. It didn't work this time, however.

A few notes on behavior. All mountain lions are different. We cannot say why this one was so determined to escort Burgess for so long, or why she charged him multiple times even when the kittens were so far behind. Was the female stressed about something?--did she feel cornered for some reason? Who can say. This was rare aggression for any mountain lion.
That said, a few thoughts (Please note these are not a criticism of Burgess, but thoughts from mountain lion biologists in the comfort of their home watching a video, rather than under the duress of an actual encounter with a wild mountain lion): the cat only showed aggressive defensive behaviors, and was not "stalking" or hunting Burgess. The charges in particular were bluffs, legs spread, body stiff--meant to scare, not engage. We think the cat actually increased its aggression, including the charges, because Burgess was not aggressive enough in return. When cats are curious or aggressive, often the best strategy is to be aggressive right back. To stop and hold ground, or even to take one or two quick steps toward the animal while clapping and yelling. Perfect moments to have charged the cat were presented when it paused to look back to where she had left the kittens. She was considering breaking off at those points and something Burgess did encouraged her to pursue further rather than return to her kittens. Of course, throw things too...no doubt its scary to consider squatting to pick up something when a cat is so very close, but if possible--when she looked back were opportunities to grab rocks as well. Note that the moment the cat was hit with a projectile, it ran.

It was a perfect scenario for bear spray as well.

A few additions. We agree with folks who are saying that being more aggressive more quickly would have probably (because we can never know!) ended the encounter more quickly--we were trying to be generous to Burgess. Not everyone remains logical and is prepared for this sort of encounter!

After an exchange with Jim Williams (author of Path of the Puma) this morning, we also wondered where the phone was and how much Burgess split attention between the screen and the actual cat. He appears to really center and keep up framing the cat perfectly as the encounter is prolonged, and may have even been watching the cat via the screen. This sort of split attention would be just the sort of thing to prolong an encounter, as he wasn't giving his full attention to the cat. As we stated above, aggression is often your best strategy in this kind of encounter, and by splitting one's attention, the cat realizes that its "winning," by which we mean it was dominating the exchange. This is worth emphasizing. Mountain lions are generally cautious and timid. These behaviors we witness here are blatant bluffs meant to scare an intruder or potential threat. Mountain lions become bolder if they feel they are intimidating whatever they are trying to intimidate, or feel they have the upper hand. We see this with people in encounters but also between cats meeting in the woods. And this is what appears to be happening here. The bluff charges were working. Burgess continues to retreat and poses her no threat, and is in fact showing greater trepidation (understandable, of course, but we're trying to illustrate the cat's point of view) so she keeps on him. If he was indeed splitting his attention between the screen and the cat, this would only serve to egg her on.
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