Simple Tips to Avoid Mountain Lion Encounters
One of the greatest assets of Castle Pines North (CPN) is the thousands of acres of open space that surround the community. With this open space comes the animals that call it home. There are herds of elk and deer, as well as other prey of mountain lions that inhabit the landscape surrounding CPN.
Residents need to remember to use precaution and common sense where wildlife is concerned. The best way to evade a confrontation with a mountain lion is to make noise, alerting the animal to human presence. Typically, mountain lions want to avoid contact with people. In addition, the Colorado Division of Wildlife recommends these tips to avoid an encounter with a mountain lion in a residential area.
Install outside lighting.
Closely supervise children whenever they play outdoors. Do not let children walk ahead or behind when hiking on trails.
Remove large areas of vegetation to eliminate hiding places for animals.
Plant non-native shrubs and plants that deer do not like to eat.
Keep pets close – roaming pets are easy prey.
Avoid feeding wildlife, including deer.
Store all garbage securely.
Tips if Met by a Lion:
Do not approach a lion, especially one that is feeding or with kittens. Most mountain lions will try to avoid a confrontation. Give them a chance to escape.
Stay calm. Talk calmly yet firmly to the lion. Move slowly.
Stop or back away slowly, if this can be done safely. Running may stimulate a lion’s instinct to chase and attack. Face the lion and stand upright.
Do everything possible to appear larger. Raise up arms or open a jacket. If small children are present, pick them up so they will not panic or run.
If the lion behaves aggressively, throw stones, branches or whatever is available without crouching down or turning around. Wave arms slowly and speak firmly.
Fight back if a lion attacks. Lions have been driven away by prey that fights back. Many people have fought back using rocks, sticks, caps or jackets, garden tools and bare hands successfully. Remain standing or try to get back up.
Who to Call?
Should an encounter with a lion or an attack occur, immediately contact the Division of Wildlife, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. Colorado’s Northeast Region Service Center can be reached at 303-291-7227. After hours, contact the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office at 303-660-7500. If it is a life threatening situation, always call 9-1-1.