“Chasing a cougar is not your everyday police work,” states The Sun Friday. All too true, as this large mountain lion‘s jog is about triple that of an average humans.
The footage, which The Sun describes aptly as “Cops chase cougar through residential street”, showcases the big cat rushing through a back alleyway. As the cougar leaps to and from driveways at breakneck pace, the police officer struggles to keep up – until the feline completely disappears into someone’s carport.
We, uh, seriously hope the homeowner was notified. Outsider reports on cougars (mountain lions, pumas, panthers, pick your poison) on a regular basis, and this is the largest this author has seen caught on film in a good while.
So, in short: there was (or is) a man-sized cougar on the loose in Grant County suburbia. The Sun, however, does not specify which state’s Grant County the footage originates in. A good dozen states have counties with this name, and mountain lions are widespread over the U.S.
The trade does provide the following information: “Local residents spotted the cougar leaping over fences into backyards, prompting a search involving the Grant County Sheriff’s Office (GCSO) and wildlife officials.”
How’s that for investigative journalism? Check out the harrowing clip for yourself below, courtesy of The Sun, and watch this officer get absolutely smoked by the big cat. Where’s a wildlife tech and/or animal control officer when you need one?
Cougar On The Loose in one of America’s Many Grant Counties
If you’re next question is “Well how fast is a cougar?” – I like you. Excellent question!
Commonly referred to as mountain lions, the North American cougar species has been observed sprinting at an incredible 50 miles per hour. Furthermore, the Mountain Lion Foundation lists several more impressive feats to go along with the big cat’s blitzing speed:
- Bound up to 40 feet running
- Leap 15 feet up a tree
- Climb over a 12 foot fence
- Travel many miles at 10 mph
- Reach speeds of 50 mph in a sprint
As for their current numbers, cougars are not currently listed as an endangered species in the U.S., outside of a small threatened population in Florida. While this is a good thing, conservationists aren’t really sure how many of these cats are left out there. Their extremely elusive nature, coupled with their penchant for controlling vast swaths of solo territory, make it incredibly hard to track and account for cougars anywhere.
The Mountain Lion Foundation does, however, estimate their U.S. population is “unlikely to exceed 30,000.” This is based on “the best available data at this time.”
So if you live in cat country, always be aware of your surroundings, never hike alone, make noise & stay vigilant, and it’s a great rule of thumb to carry bear spray for big cats, as well. The moral being: all Outsiders definitely want to avoid an encounter like this terrifying footage from earlier in May.