Mountain lion in the neighborhood

caflowerluverSeptember 23, 2012

Kind of a little on edge since I received this message from one of my neighbors a week ago. I am use to seeing coyotes and bob cats, but don't want to run into a mt. lion. I keep looking over my shoulder when working in the garden or at the potting shed. The ridge they are talking about is just behind our house. I don't let Elvira out any more unless she is on a leash. Most of the time I leave her in the house now if I have lots of work to do. Don't want to have to carry her, a fat little doggie that weighs a ton, if a mt. lion is chasing me.

Actually I don't mind the mt. lion getting the deer, circle of life and all that. And to be honest we have been ticked off at all the deer we had to deal with this summer that ruined the garden and ate all my 30 roses down to the ground. One figured out how to jump either the gate or the deer fence. I spent many afternoons trying to chase it off the property. I am getting too old and out of shape for this.

"Hi, neighbors!

Just a quick heads up that we should all be aware that there's a mountain lion whose range includes our road. We are on the edge of the lion's range, but it has visited here many times, including just yesterday afternoon.

I saw several deer running quickly across the top of the back ridge through the yard and onto the road. Looked like something was chasing them. Tonight I found the head of an adult deer next to the fence between our house and neighbor's. So there was probably a kill up the ridge ..."

Clare

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centralcacyclist

I'm hoping the deer look tastier than a chubby little pooch. Yikes! That's scary!

Eileen

    Bookmark   September 23, 2012 at 8:07PM
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lindac

Scary!....and I am fretting over a young opossom!

    Bookmark   September 23, 2012 at 10:39PM
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publickman

I've only seen one mountain lion in the wild, and that was in the southern part of Sequoia, or maybe south of the park. I saw it running up a hill as we drove by - we were on a dead-end road that went to a white-water rafting launch, and so there was very little traffic on that road.

I would much rather have an occasional mountain lion than to have deer ravaging my property. I pretty much like all cats anyway. I'm not fond of coyotes, wolves, bears, or other such noisy animals - I find them much spookier. I got chased by a large bear in Sequoia the second time I went there. It chased me around our picnic table several times, hoping to get my sandwich, but of course I was not about to give that up!

Lars

    Bookmark   September 24, 2012 at 1:48AM
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dedtired

Lars, the next time a bear chases you , for pete's sake give him the sandwich.

A mt. lion! That is scary. The eastern mt. lion is supposedly extinct, although there have been reports of sightings. I hope there are some out there, just not near me.

I wouldn't want to be the person who found the deer head. Yuck. Glad you are on alert, and that the lion sticks to a diet of deer.

    Bookmark   September 24, 2012 at 2:55AM
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dcarch7

Mountain lion attacking humans are rare, but it has happened.

I don't know that much about mountain lions, I live in NYC, we have much more dangerous animals here (LOL!). I carry a pepper spray and an electronic alarm with me when I go into questionable neighborhoods.

I wonder if the spray and alarm would deter a mountain lion.

dcarch

    Bookmark   September 24, 2012 at 6:25AM
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centralcacyclist

I'm nowhere close to mountain lion territory but I understand I still have a raccoon family in the cypress trees behind my house. They haven't ventured into my yard though and I've never seen them though my neighbors have. I've had a dog for so long that they may have decided my yard is not a good spot, which is fine with me. Urban raccoons can be very destructive and hard to get rid of.

Some bear repellant might be a good idea to have with you.

Eileen

Here is a link that might be useful: WILL BEAR SPRAY WARD OFF A MOUNTAIN LION ATTACK?

    Bookmark   September 24, 2012 at 8:53AM
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dcarch7

This is one of the electronic panic alarms ($10.00) I am talking about (link below). It generates high brightness strobe light plus 130 dbs of wobbling noise. 130 dbs is about as loud as a jet engine. Animals have very sensitive hearing, this will cause them a lot of pain.

I also remember this: In India, tiger country, people wear face masks backwards on their heads when they are in the woods. Supposedly this will prevent stalking animals from attacking.

dcarch

Here is a link that might be useful: Panic alarm

    Bookmark   September 24, 2012 at 10:38AM
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triciae

I lived in Ely, Nevada as a kid. Lots of mountain lions.

Together with my friend Nancy, we built a tree "fort" in the hills above our house. It's where we had our "secret" meetings. Very important stuff when you're ten.

One day while in our fort after school a mountain lion came casually walking up to our tree. Big male. He looked straight up at us. We had frozen in place when we first saw him - I'm sure it was long after he'd become aware of US!

The lion just flopped down at the base of our tree and went to sleep. Neither of us so much as batted our eye lashes. Just sat there waiting, waiting, waiting just like we'd been taught. It started to get on towards dusk and we both knew we would be expected home for dinner. Neither of us moved.

After what seemed like an eternity the lion got up, big stretch, shook his whole body a couple times, and just as casually as he'd arrived...he walked off...down the path that we'd made from dragging all the stuff up the hill from my house to build our fort.

We waited a long time before moving or speaking. We both knew there were only two ways home. One - down the path the lion took. That was the short way home. Or, we could follow the ledge and take the wild horse path eventually ending up in East Ely - about 3 miles from home. We'd be VERY late getting home for dinner and no doubt scaring our parents. Didn't even have to discuss it - we headed down the pony path towards East Ely jumping ever time a twig rustled.

I've got lots of mountain lion stories. We just learned to live with them. They STINK to high heaven. You can smell them before you see them and I imagine they would say the same thing about us!

/tricia

    Bookmark   September 24, 2012 at 10:56AM
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caflowerluver

Thanks everyone for the information and tips. I have been doing lots of reading on the subject. I might get some of that pepper spray to have with me.

We have had lots of other critters over the last 26 years. Several times we have seen a mother raccoon and babies on our deck getting into Elvira's water bowl. I think it was bigger than Elvira. I don't want to mess with a raccoon. I have heard they are very vicious. We have had opossums, skunks, rattle snake (in the garage), bats (loved the patio umbrella) and like said before bob cats and coyotes. Most of the time I say live and let live except when they do damage like deer, gophers, and ground squirrels. I thought about inviting hunters to get the deer this year, it was so bad.
Clare

    Bookmark   September 24, 2012 at 2:01PM
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Gina_W

Scary.

We have a gated section of the back yard and beyond that we planted a bunch of fruit trees. We were leaving the gate open so Odo could go down there when he wanted, but then we saw foxes. The foxes and other critters use a concrete drainage line that crosses our orchard - we call it the fox highway now. So now we keep the gate closed and look both ways before letting Odo go down there.

During breeding season we saw foxes a few times a week, sometimes in the middle of the day. The last I saw one was a couple weeks ago, a young fox was eating figs off our tree, then moved to my neighbor's larger fig tree. The neighbor threw a lemon at him, and he scooted off, then came right back.

The next day another neighbor told me that he had given the foxes some peanut butter treats! Dohhhh...

    Bookmark   September 25, 2012 at 4:29PM
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ann_t

We have cougars/mountain lions in our area. Thankfully I haven't seen one. But on our walk last week, we saw all kinds of bear scat. Fresh. That kind of made me nervous.

~Ann

    Bookmark   September 25, 2012 at 5:15PM
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lindac

There was a cougar sighting a couple of years about 10 miles from me....and later that year another was hit by a car not too far from the same area. No idea if it was the same one....but nothing in the past 2 years or so.
But we're farming country...not a lot of "mountain lion terretory"...but lots and lots of deer....and lambs and calves.

    Bookmark   September 25, 2012 at 6:52PM
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dedtired

There's a big, scary spider in my carport. Best I can do!

    Bookmark   September 25, 2012 at 8:30PM
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Gina_W

LOL Pam!

    Bookmark   September 26, 2012 at 7:16PM
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dedtired

The answer to the Toss Up question tonight on Jeopardy was "mountain lion". Thought you'd want to know.

    Bookmark   September 26, 2012 at 8:37PM
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annie1992

Well, I did see a black animal on the back edge of the hayfield one day and, thinking it was that blasted black steer that always escaped, started across the field to corral it. Turned out it was a black bear, LOL, and I left it right there.

We have a few mountain lions, some foxes, porcupines, turkeys, deer, black bear, badgers, raccoons and skunks. Oh, and mink, weasels and our worst problem, coyotes.

The coyotes are worst, they'll eat house cats, small dogs, they run in a pack and have even terrorized neighborhood goats and sheep. At least all the bear do are pull down the bird feeders and scatter the garbage, geez.

Be careful, though, mountain lions can and do attack people and wouldn't hesitate to snack on Elvira. And do not discount the raccoons, they've been known to kill a small dog if cornered, to say nothing of the possibility of sickness if she were to get injured.

Annie

    Bookmark   September 27, 2012 at 12:00AM
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caflowerluver

dedtired - LOL! We have scary spiders too, black widows.

Mt. lions have attacked people in my area. Usually runners in the state parks. They even teach kids in school here how to act if they should come across a mt. lion or bear. Coyotes have taken my next door neighbor's cats twice and they just keep getting new ones and leave them outside. Idiots.

I saw a coyote once as I was going up to my garden, not 20 ft. away from the house, I turned around and went back inside. It was eating my tomatoes. I let him have them. I think as the deer have moved in closer to people to eat their landscaping and gardens, the prey animals have followed.

Clare

    Bookmark   September 27, 2012 at 12:17PM
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publickman

One of the problems with the wild animals is that a lot of them have rabies, and this makes them more dangerous. I don't know if that is true for bears, but I do know that several mountain lions that attacked people had rabies.

I used to have black widow spiders - mainly in the garage - but they have been replaced by brown recluse spiders, which eat black widows. The brown recluse spiders are supposed to be more venomous, but they are so shy that human hardly ever get bitten. Here's a photo of the first one I found, not knowing what it was. Now I know to stay away from them. The lizards like to eat them, and so I haven't seen many spiders lately.

Lars

    Bookmark   September 28, 2012 at 3:13PM
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centralcacyclist

That's not a brown recluse. That is a male black widow.

Brown recluse spiders have a violin shaped mark on them.

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   September 28, 2012 at 3:37PM
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dedtired

No matter what it is, if I had that in the garage I would sell the house and move. I seem to be overrun with huge icky spiders, outdoors, thank God. I will try to get a closer look, but I will use binoculars.

What happens if one of these things bites you?

    Bookmark   September 28, 2012 at 10:16PM
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annie1992

dedtired, Ashley can tell you. She got bitten by one a couple of years ago, ended up taking an ambulance ride to Grand Rapids for treatment. She got bitten when she was stacking firewood with a friend.

Her leg where she was bitten got more and more sore. Soon red streaks were running down her leg from the bite on the front of her thigh. The bite became an open sore with the flesh around it dying. When she finally went to the emergency room here, they put her directly into an ambulance and shipped her off to the "big" hospital. Eventually she healed, but she still has a "hole" in the front of her thigh where the bite scarred.

Annie

    Bookmark   September 28, 2012 at 10:25PM
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centralcacyclist

A brown recluse is very bad news as Annie states. Tissue necrosis sets in very quickly. I have a friend who was made very ill from a brown recluse bite. Tissue necrosis can also happen with a black widow bite but not as likely. Male black widows are not as poisonous I understand. I have read about hobo spiders as well and they are supposed to be as nasty as brown recluse spiders. I have seen only a couple of dead recluse spiders. Found in weird remote places when cleaning.

I have had troubles with black widows at my house. There have been some monsters. I loathe spiders and black widows really trigger my phobia.

    Bookmark   September 28, 2012 at 10:50PM
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mustangs81

We only have to worry about alligators here.

Any new sightings of the mountain lion?

    Bookmark   September 29, 2012 at 8:56AM
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caflowerluver

Alligators scare the snot out of me. When I visit my relatives in Fla. I am always on the look out for alligators in the canals. My brother's place backs up on a pond (swamp) where some have been sighted.

I haven't heard of any more mt. lion sightings but not doing as much outside work. The summer garden is winding down, though it is getting time to plant the winter/fall garden.

We use to find lots of black widow spiders when we first moved in. The horse shed, which later became my garden shed, was full of them as was the garage. Both places needed major cleaning. The previous owners were a little strange, another story another time. Sort of hoarders. We keep the place neat and tidy with snap lid containers in cabinets so don't seem to get them as much anymore, though there was one in the corner by the front door. Raid took care of her.

Clare

    Bookmark   September 29, 2012 at 9:28AM
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centralcacyclist

Alligators trump black widows! And probably mountain lions, too!

E

    Bookmark   September 29, 2012 at 10:26AM
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mustangs81

This picture reminds me of a (one of many) REALLY STUPID thing I did. I was doing my daily skiing in our lake (which had gators that hid in the cat tails). After skiing I got the camera, went to the dock and with my toes dangling over the edge, was positioned to take a picture of the gators teeth when he got close enough. He slowly floated towards the dock and I waited for just the right moment to snap the picture. I knew that gators were quick and could drag a person under but I thought I was quicker. Okay, give me a break, I was only 20 something.

    Bookmark   September 29, 2012 at 11:58AM
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caflowerluver

Tell me that is a stuffed alligator and this is a posed picture. No one would put their kid in that kind of danger - right?

mustangs - We all did scary (read dumb) stuff when we were in our 20s. Had that 'nothing can harm us and we will live forever' attitude. Surprising so many of us made it past that period.
Clare

    Bookmark   September 29, 2012 at 2:48PM
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publickman

Eileen, I did get the name wrong, but the spider I photographed is a Brown Widow Spider, and as you can see from the article I linked to below, the brown widow spider appears to be displacing the black widow spider, but not in your area yet. I used to see female black widow spiders quite frequently here the first year I was here, but I have not seen a single one in the past two years - only these brown versions.

I've managed to steer clear of alligators, although they are making a comeback in east Texas now.

Lars

Here is a link that might be useful: Brown widow spider

    Bookmark   September 29, 2012 at 4:42PM
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mustangs81

I saw an unusual bug and thought I would save it for Beau. I picked it up and it stung me; the pain was so painful for 2 hours. I went back to where I had stepped on it after throwing it down and it was still moving in two pieces! I saved it and showed my DH telling him that if I died, this is what killed me.

I found out from my bug man that it was a velvet ant or cow killer. It is said that the sting is so painful that it could kill a cow.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2012 at 12:30PM
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lindac

This was about 23 miles from my back door....
but not as scary as those spiders!!!!!

Here is a link that might be useful: big cat

    Bookmark   October 10, 2012 at 5:10PM
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