WSU police advise caution after possible cougar reported in Pullman

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The Washington State University Police Department has reported recent evidence of wildlife activity, including the possibility of a cougar, near Terre View Drive between Northwood Drive and Pullman Airport Road. WSU Police are actively collaborating with the Washington State Department of Fish & Wildlife to ensure the safety and security of the WSU community.

Residents and visitors in the area are advised to remain vigilant, supervise children and pets closely, and report any cougar sightings immediately by calling 911. Interactions between humans and cougars (Puma concolor) present unique challenges for wildlife managers.

Reducing the occurrences that lead to conflicts between humans and cougars is a high priority for wildlife agencies throughout western North America, including Washington, according to the Department of Fish & Wildlife.

Most cougar sightings and interactions with humans occur at the wildland-urban interface or in rural residential settings that provide both abundant native prey, primarily deer, and stalking cover.

Most cougar sightings and interactions with humans occur at the wildland-urban interface or in rural residential settings that provide both abundant native prey, primarily deer, and stalking cover. Cougars are typically most active from dusk to dawn though it is not unusual for them to hunt at any time during the day.

Adult cougars generally prey on deer, elk, moose, mountain goats, and wild sheep with deer being their most preferred and common prey. Younger cougars may hunt a variety of other species, including raccoons, coyotes, rabbits, hares, small rodents — and occasionally pets and livestock such as goats, sheep, and chickens.

For more information on living with cougars, please visit the Washington State Department of Fish & Wildlife’s website.

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