Photo courtesy of the DWR
Two mountain lion sightings have been reported in Orangeville, leading to a wave of concern and questions across Castle Country.
The first sighting, last Tuesday, was reported early in the morning with the second taking place last night from 8:30-9:00. Both sightings were reported by the bridge in town which crosses Cottonwood creek.
The probable reason for the behavior, according to Wade Paskett, is the search for food. The Wildlife Biologist for the Division of Wildlife Resources explained how deer, a mountain lion’s primary prey, frequent the river corridor. To date, there have been no pets or livestock killed by the cat.
The information has been shared on local social media and the sheriff’s office has been contacted in an effort to release the information. Signage has also been placed in the area while officials have tried to locate the cat and remove it from the town.
Paskett encouraged the public to be watchful in the area especially with children at night, when mountain lions are the most active. Also, feeding house pets inside as a precaution can be helpful, as some cats will eat dog and cat food if the circumstance arises.
Similarly, keeping pets and livestock inside wherever possible is another precaution, according to Paskett, as well as keeping areas well-lit as mountain lions prefer to keep to the dark.
If you see the mountain lion, please call the Emery County Sheriff’s Office dispatch and report the sighting.
More information on the subject can be found on the DWR’s website and searching “cougar.”