On Saturday, Dec. 14 Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks (FWP) killed a mountain lion on Oral Zumwalt Way, just south of Missoula. FWP believes the lion could be the same animal that was spotted multiple times this fall in the Miller Creek area, in the vicinity of Oral Zumwalt, Trails End and Rodeo Road.
“This lion was behaving unnaturally and posed a human safety risk to people at their residences,” said FWP Regional Wildlife Manager, Mike Thompson.
FWP mountain lion specialist, Bob Wiesner, reported that the animal was an approximately 18-month-old, sub-adult male, weighing an estimated 110 pounds. Wiesner responded to a report from a homeowner at 9am on Saturday and found that the lion had killed a mule deer fawn among houses. FWP was able to track and remove the lion later that day.
FWP is hopeful that this control action will put an end to the lion encounters in the Miller Creek area, at least for the time being, but reminds residents that Missoula is surrounded by good mountain lion habitat and to follow proper precautions. For mountain lion safety tips, visit fwp.mt.gov and follow links to “Living with Wildlife.”
(Report by Montana FWP; Cover photo: jumblesandpompoms.blogspot.com)