DNR Investigating Cougar Sighting, Caledonia Conservancy Says

A cougar has been "seen coming and going out of an abandoned barn numerous times," according to the Caledonia Conservancy.

The Caledonia Conservancy reported that a cougar was “seen coming and going out of an abandoned barn numerous times” on a property at 6 Mile and Foley Road three times over the weekend.

The DNR is investigating the sighting, according to the Caledonia Conservancy. However, Patch has not confirmed the investigation.

This isn’t the first time residents have reported seeing a cougar.

Tracy Curran reported seeing “a very large cat, that wasn’t a fox or a coyote” in November just north of the 5500 block of 5 Mile Road.

The cat was about 4 feet long, and orange or tan colored, and weighed between 80 and 90 pounds, Curran said. It had a long tail and was crouched close to the ground.

“It was hunting something, and I was glad that it was hunting something else and not me,” she said.

In November, Adrian Wydeven, carnivore specialist with the DNR, said while cougars have been located in Wisconsin, they have typically been found in the northern and western parts of the state. Still, cougars are known to travel from western South Dakota as far away a Connecticut.

Curran reported the incident to the DNR. However, the DNR did not investigate.

We’ve got a phone call into the DNR to confirm this most recent cougar report and will update the story when it's confirmed.

Jay Warner May 09, 2013 at 04:05 PM
The attached picture looks like it was taken at close range, of a relaxed cougar in a cage. Can we get an update on this story - is the report from the Conservancy board, a spokes-person on behalf of the Conservancy, or a single person who happens to be a member? Exactly who sighted the animal, and what details did they provide to the DNR? Is anyone volunteering to stake out the abandoned barn for another sighting? At least we should see that the original observer has some good binoculars.
CowDung May 09, 2013 at 04:11 PM
"The DNR is investigating the sighting, according to the Caledonia Conservancy. However, Patch has not confirmed the investigation." If Patch has not confirmed the investigation, how can you report that the DNR is investigating?
Denise Lockwood May 09, 2013 at 04:45 PM
Jay and Cos, Just updated the story. I was at a training all day in Chicago yesterday. The report came from the Caledonia Conservancy Facebook page, but I also confirmed the Facebook post with a family member of the person who made the report. The family didn't want me to use their name so I attributed the report to the Caledonia Conservancy after I had a confirmation. The page also indicated that the incident was reported to the DNR, which was why I attributed it to the Conservancy (but I clarified that the report came from their facebook page). @Cowdung, I was transparent of where I got the information and that it had not been confirmed by the DNR. Yesterday, I spoke with a DNR official, who wasn't sure whether there had been an official investigation and she was working on getting me to the right person. So, when I spoke to the official, I updated the story.
CowDung May 09, 2013 at 05:01 PM
After re-reading it, it does make sense--the way it was stated confused me a bit. Thanks for the update, Denise.
Vicki Jorgensen May 09, 2013 at 06:14 PM
If there are no female east of the Mississippi around where are the cougars coming from? The entire population is Males and they live forever??? Or they walk all the way up from Florida? Does not add up!
Mike Fischer May 10, 2013 at 12:17 PM
Vicki, I believe they're saying that the cougars sometimes seen around here are young males looking for territory and breeding partners. The females apparently tend to stay in their area they are born in, while the young males roam seeking a partner. A cougar can cover a ridiculous number of miles per day, so they could easily make it here from west of the Mississippi.
Mike Fischer May 10, 2013 at 12:21 PM
The DNR has a pretty good page about cougar sightings here: http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/wildlifehabitat/cougar.html
Denise Lockwood May 10, 2013 at 01:46 PM
@Mike, I included that link in the story.
Denise Lockwood May 10, 2013 at 03:54 PM
You know Cow that I'm all about you...
Jim McIlvaine May 10, 2013 at 11:07 PM
My wife first spotted a cougar-type animal on one of the horse trails just south of 6 Mile back in 2010. I don't know why someone needs to sit in the woods with a pair of binoculars, just get some game cameras and position them by the barn.
Denise Lockwood May 16, 2013 at 12:20 PM
@Jim, I know there was also a person who sighted an animal they thought looked like a cougar in December of 2011. It was back in the subdivision by Brossman's near Six Mile Road. I called the woman, but she never got back to me. Do you live around there? I can't underscore enough how skeptical the DNR is about these alleged sightings. When I spoke to the DNR's media person, he said most of these sightings are unfounded. I'm not sure what to make of that.


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