Friday, November 06, 2009

Mich. officials react to cougar confirmation in Upper Peninsula

DNR react to cougar confirmation

DNR Wildlife Biologist Brian Roell is excited by the news because the thought was big cats had been out of the UP since the early 1900's.


Thursday, November 05, 2009 at 4:31 p.m.

MARQUETTE -- We're getting reaction from the DNR Thursday after a UP trail camera photo of a cougar was confirmed by officials.

The DNR says this is, in fact, a mountain lion from an area near Bruce Township in the Eastern UP.

DNR Wildlife Biologist Brian Roell is excited by the news because the thought was big cats had been out of the UP since the early 1900's.

The next step, according to Roell, is to find a hair or blood sample from a cougar to find out where it's from.

"The next question we would like to know is where did it come from," Roell says. "Is it a western animal? Is it an escaped pet or a purposefully released animal? Those kinds of things we just don't know."

Although Roell believes it's highly unlikely, if you do encounter a cougar, he says not to approach it and slowly walk away.

It's a protected animal, but if a human life is threatened you can defend yourself.

http://www.connectmidmichigan.com/news/story.aspx?id=372939

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Learn more about big cats and Big Cat Rescue at http://www.bigcatrescue.org

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