PLEASANT GROVE, Utah, June 9, 2022 (Gephardt Daily) — City officials are warning Pleasant Grove residents to protect their small children and pets following mountain lion sightings Thursday.
A post on the city’s Facebook page says the mountain lion sightings were reported in the area of 2600 North and 900 West.
“Be aware of your surroundings and the whereabouts of your small children,” the post states. “Bring your pets inside at night.”
The Utah Division of Wildlife Resources says mountain lions or cougars can be found throughout Utah, generally in the foothill and canyon areas, though sometimes in the valleys. Population data also indicates that their numbers have been growing steadily the past few years, according to a news release.
“People are the most likely to encounter cougars in areas frequented by mule deer and during the early morning and at dusk, when cougars are most likely to be hunting,” said Darren DeBloois, DWR’s game mammals coordinator.
State wildlife officials recently released some tips to help Utahns avoid conflicts with mountain lions:
- Do not hike or jog alone.
- Maintain awareness while hiking or jogging, and avoid using headphones that block out your surroundings.
- Travel in groups and keep everyone together, including children and dogs.
- Make noise while hiking to alert mountain lions of your presence.
- Leave the area if you find a dead animal, especially deer or elk, since it could be a mountain lion kill.
- Do not leave children outside unattended in areas near deer habitat, especially at dawn and dusk.
- Install outside and motion-sensitive lighting around your property.
- Trim vegetation and remove wood piles to reduce hiding places for wildlife.
- Bring pets and livestock inside at night or secure them in a barn or kennel with a top.
DWR also shared some tips for staying safe in the event someone encounters a mountain lion in Utah:
- Never run from a mountain lion, as that could trigger its instincts to chase.
- Maintain eye contact.
- Pick up children and pets, or keep them very close.
- Stand up tall; do not crouch or squat.
- Make yourself look bigger by raising and waving your arms or jacket above your head.
- Talk firmly in a loud voice, back away slowly and leave the area.
- Fight back if you are attacked. Protect your head and neck.
- If you are aggressive enough, the mountain lion probably will flee.
For more safety tips, visit the Wild Aware Utah website.