Idaho conservation officers euthanized a mountain lion on Aug. 25 in the town of Priest River. The lion had been observed within city limits and reportedly killed a domestic cat near the junior high school. The pet’s owner observed the lion on her property a second time and contacted Fish and Game.
Fish and Game officers, the Priest River Police Department and a wildlife biologist from the Kalispel Tribe of Indians were able to track and kill the lion on Bonner County property west of Priest River High School.
“That is uncommon behavior for a lion to be hanging out in town like that,” said Senior Conservation Officer Doug Meyer. The decision to euthanize the lion was based on its proximity to town and risk to public safety.
Mountain lions are common throughout northern Idaho. Fish and Game recommends the following steps to help avoid conflicts with mountain lions:
- Don’t feed wildlife, which includes securing garbage or pet food. Attracting deer, raccoons or other small animals can also attract their predators
- Keep small pets indoors, especially from dawn to dusk
- Close off spaces beneath decks, porches or sheds that can be used by mountain lions and lion prey species
If you encounter a mountain lion:
- Do not run
- If you are with children, pick them up without bending over
- Shout, wave your arms, and throw objects if the lion does not leave the area
- Fight back if the mountain lion attacks
To report mountain lion sightings, call the Panhandle Regional Office at (208)769-1414.