Cougar caught on trail cam in Buffalo County

(WEAU) - A trail camera caught a rare sight in Buffalo County.

This cougar was caught on camera sometime after dark on Saturday between Gilmanton and Mondovi. The DNR says a new landowner found the image on his trail camera and the DNR confirmed it was there.

They say the cougars can go long distances without being detected. The DNR thinks they may be coming from the Black Hills in South Dakota.

Six other cougars have been confirmed in Wisconsin since 2008.

Animal experts and local hunters are looking for answers after the cougar was spotted.

Mike Osmond said he set up the motion detecting camera just to see what would come by.

"The camera was down (on a tree), he came down the edge of the bean field, and I caught him 15-20 feet from the camera," Osmond said.

Osmond reported the picture to DNR biologists who came to verify it.

"Anyone who might see anything, we've really asked them to come forth with that information and let us know so we can try and track this animal's movements through public reports," DNR wildlife biologist Jess Carstens said.

He said unverified cougar calls come in about once a week.

"The ones that we've had in the past...Have all traced back to the Black Hills of South Dakota. That's the closest known breeding population."

Carstens is on the state cougar committee and said the animal is likely a young male looking for a mate, and some have been spotted as far away as Connecticut.

"This animal could be 50 or 100 miles away by now. It may still be relatively close to where this sighting happened," he said.

He said attacks on humans are rare, but not impossible.

"With wild animals comes unpredictability. You need to use common sense and keep your own safety in mind."

"Everybody's got their opinion on it if it's good or bad. But i think it's nice to have a variety and something cool to see," Osmond said.

The DNR has set up a website to report cougar sightings, and if you see one, experts say not to run, but to make yourself look big and make noises to intimidate the animals.


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  • by Matilda Location: EC on Jul 20, 2012 at 02:21 PM
    Do cougars live on corn and wild berries like black bears normally do? If they eat meat, how much meat does it take for sustenance for a cougar daily? I hope it's just a bunch of mice, otherwise I am going to keep my cat, Snookers, in the house much more. She loves me and I love her. Yes, I am single, but I have no interest in men, so don't be pestering me.
  • by Sam Location: S Eleva area on Jul 20, 2012 at 12:03 PM
    Now I need to set my cam up. Great.
  • by Joe mama Location: who knows on Jul 20, 2012 at 08:39 AM
    I do belive this guy is a cop cougar smelt the bacon all the way from the dakotas..but who knows maybe that picture is not even from his land maybe its off the internet he's just trying to get attion and get people/kids to drive by so he can pull them over ! D.A.P
    • reply
      by @Joe mama on Jul 20, 2012 at 10:54 AM in reply to Joe mama
      Get a life tool stop being a crack head and the police wont be after you
    • reply
      by Jen on Jul 20, 2012 at 03:20 PM in reply to Joe mama
      You are an idiot. Grow up. I'll bet that you'll be hoping this cop shows up at your house to save you if you ever need him. Don't do illegal or stupid things and you have no reason to be disrespectful of cops.
  • by Anonymous on Jul 20, 2012 at 05:23 AM
    Whenever there is any article about wolves or cougars all the ignorant mouth breathers come out of the woodwork. Here is the typical conversation - "Hey Cleetus, I done saw a cougar on the computer box thing". "Well Festus, we better shoot it before it eats all the children and deer". "Whoo-hoo, let's get er' done!" (insert banjo music).
    • reply
      by Ron on Jul 20, 2012 at 12:45 PM in reply to
      also, some of us who live in the country and see these animals on a regular basis post here
  • by Willy Location: Elmwood on Jul 19, 2012 at 11:25 AM
    Remember its not a cougar its a coyote, check the DNRs animal identification website for further proof.
  • by The Earthling Location: Planet Earth on Jul 19, 2012 at 09:45 AM
    Whats up with all you kind, or not so kind folks that want to immediately kill all the wolfs and cougars? What have they done to you? Oh my the wolves might take a cow or decimate the deer herd. The cougar might run off with your house cat or a couple chickens. Guess what? They were here first. Learn to live with them, not against them. The people that want to kill these animals right away make me sick...
    • reply
      by SMN on Jul 19, 2012 at 10:32 AM in reply to The Earthling
      Right, wait until it kills a child before we do something about it. Sound like a stellar plan to me. Cougars are a predatory hunter and will attack without being provoked. They are not you typical harmless critter that can live peacefully next to earthlings.
      • reply
        by blinky on Jul 19, 2012 at 12:47 PM in reply to SMN
        Well, hunters have killed more humans in Wisconsin than wolves and cougars COMBINED! It wasn't that long ago a hunter killed off six people. By your logic......
        • reply
          by SMN on Jul 20, 2012 at 02:31 PM in reply to blinky
          I am very aware of the hunters you are referring to, I personally know/knew them. I am suggesting that we do something to PREVENT anything from happening, like what didn't happen in '04. Why wait until it is a problem to address it? Why not do what we can today to ensure it NEVER happens? By your logic....people must DIE before you see how serious this matter is.
        • reply
          by blinky on Jul 20, 2012 at 06:43 PM in reply to blinky
          So you're saying we need to eliminate hunters before they have the chance to kill other humans? That was a case then of people who DIED and we still allow the threat of hunters exist.
      • reply
        by Anonymous on Jul 20, 2012 at 06:43 AM in reply to SMN
        Sounds like the descriptions used for teachers in the recent past
    • reply
      by The martian on Jul 19, 2012 at 11:25 AM in reply to The Earthling
      Put a fence around and over where you live, and then fill it full of wolves and cougars. Then you might get the picture why people want to kill these thing right away.
  • by statman on Jul 19, 2012 at 08:04 AM
    This cat will look beautiful with a hole in its head laying on the dnr's door step. Im shocked the dnr didnt say it left the duluth zoo when it flooded. The dnr is a joke!!! Shoot! Shoot! Shoot!
    • reply
      by hr on Jul 20, 2012 at 08:45 PM in reply to statman
      Keep hiding behind your guns wimps. Ya'll scared of something? Hiding behind a gun!
  • by Mwinar on Jul 19, 2012 at 05:46 AM
    Now that there's photo proof the other "6" they denied are now confirmed, but only passing through, what a joke.
  • by anonymous Location: Eau Claire on Jul 19, 2012 at 05:33 AM
    I think that cougar was just passing through Wisconsin heading to the Dakotas...after it figured out that there are no good paying jobs around here.
  • by me on Jul 19, 2012 at 05:08 AM
    Oh no, thats not really a cougar. The DNR said there are not any here.....
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