Mountain lion sighted in Park City |

Mountain lion sighted in Park City

The animal eludes police perimeter

by Jay Hamburger

A mountain lion was seen in or just outside a Park City neighborhood on Sunday evening, the Park City Police Department said, indicating there were several sightings.

The Police Department in an online posting said one of the sightings was at 8:40 p.m. in the area of Mellow Mountain Road and Sunnyside Drive. The posting said there were confirmed sightings in that vicinity. The police said officers saw the mountain lion running and created a perimeter. Officers who searched for the mountain lion did not find the animal after it was seen running, the police said.

The Police Department said a reverse 911 emergency alert call was sent to people who live in the neighborhood. The police said there had not been another sighting by 10 a.m. on Monday. State wildlife officers were contacted.

The police occasionally receive reports of mountain lion sightings in or close to Park City neighborhoods. Mountain lion prey such as deer are plentiful in the area. The mountain lions, as well as the prey animals, more commonly stay at higher elevations, though, in the summer.

State wildlife officers typically use dogs to attempt to chase a mountain lion out of populated areas if it is not acting aggressively to people or pets. Another option is tranquilizing a mountain lion and relocating the animal to land well outside of populated areas.

The state Division of Wildlife Resources recommends precautions be taken when a mountain lion is sighted. People should keep tabs on pets and not feed pets outside. If a person comes across a mountain lion, they should stand their ground before backing away. They should not flee from a mountain lion, something that could trigger the animal's natural instincts to chase prey. Should a mountain lion attack, a person should fight back.