Big cat caught: Officials nab cougar in southern Ontario town
Published Friday, July 11, 2014 7:56PM EDT
Last Updated Saturday, July 12, 2014 8:34AM EDT
The Ministry of Natural Resources has captured a cougar that had been lurking in bushy areas and backyards in a southern Ontario town for the past week.
Cougars, also known as mountain lions, are considered Canada’s largest and most powerful wildcat. The one spotted in Cobourg – located east of Oshawa -- is believed to weigh approximately 68 kilograms.
Ministry officials were using a whole chicken and a T-bone steak as bait, in hopes of luring the cougar. They confirmed its capture late Friday night.
OPP Sgt. Paul Zeggil said earlier that the cougar would be moved to another area, far away from humans.
"With the assistance of the MNR, we’d like to relocate the cougar to a safer location," he said.
Roman Zakrajsek said he saw the cougar on his property and his two dogs barked it at.
"It was sort of in an apprehensive mode, like it didn’t know whether to fight or flee," he told CTV Toronto.
Zakrajsek said he used a shovel and scared the cougar away.
"I picked (up the shovel) and I was roaring at the cat."
The cougar was spotted again on Tuesday and Thursday.
"(It) just sauntered around like he owned the place," Jean Wilson told CTV Toronto.
She first saw the cougar Thursday morning. It had cut across her vegetable garden, where a trail of paw prints was left in the dirt the following day. At one point, the cougar also walked up to Wilson's deck and peered into her house through a window.
"He was looking right in the window," she said.
The cougar later strolled to a grove of trees on Wilson's property, where it laid there all day.
With a report from CTV Toronto's Zuraidah Alman