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Nice kitty!  Jay Blackburn is a businessman from Idaho Falls.  His security camera photographed a large animal in the backyard.  If you take a close look, it resembles an overgrown tabby.  Though, without any markings.  Mostly tan in color.  It also growls more than it purrs.  If this big cat wanted to share your bed, you would choose to sleep away from home.

Once again, it shows us just how close we are to wildlife in Idaho.  We often don’t even notice we have company.  Idaho Falls and Pocatello have far more mountain lion sightings than we do in the Magic Valley, but we aren’t immune.  Last year a runner encountered one at Federation Point in Twin Falls.  A few weeks earlier, some men working on a roof at the College of Southern Idaho reported they saw a big cat on campus (I’m told there are a few cougars as well but they’re on their way to class!)

I’ve talked with staff at Idaho Fish and Game and they always explain we’ve moved into the territory of the animals and not the other way around.  With one caveat.  Some of the increasing encounters may be due to the lions becoming more acclimated to people.  And a lot of what we build and grow provides them with cover and dens.

Remember if you see one, don’t run away.  The animal may then see you as prey.  Back away slowly.  Also, the big cat may be just as startled as you are.  If it has an exit, it more often than not will choose to leave.

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