Cougar Attack

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meingh
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Cougar Attack

Post by meingh » Tue Jun 16, 2009 8:49 pm

I know this has been mentioned before but I though I would post a link to the most recent attack.

http://www.cbc.ca/canada/british-columb ... ml?ref=rss

enchanted
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Post by enchanted » Tue Jun 16, 2009 9:44 pm

This happened right by my house and the girl is the daughter of people we know. I understand Kevin's conservation take on the situation but the sheer number of cats hanging around here is insane. People are seeing them all the time. I've grown up here and it's never been this bad. Having two young kids of my own I'm be more than happy to see the cats killed. The risk to the public is just to high. The CO's had the dogs on the one that that got Maya tonight. I could hear the hounds barking and two shots fired but apparently they missed. Hopefully they get it and the other 10 or so others hanging around Squamish preying on our kids and pets.

t2climb
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Post by t2climb » Tue Jun 16, 2009 10:16 pm

I have heard the little girl is going to be fine. Killing every cougar and wild animal wondering through and around Squamish is not the answer. That will not eliminate the problem as there are always more wild animals to fill the void.
Keep small children close to you and leave your small dogs at home until the cougars move on. Once they realize there is nothing to eat they will move on.

Before houses were being built all over Squamish what do you think lived where those crappy new sub-divisions now exist?

pinner
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Post by pinner » Tue Jun 16, 2009 11:18 pm

Unfortunately, t2climb, it IS the answer, at least in the case of animals attacking humans, or other animals in the presence of humans. Mother Nature maintains a balance, but sometimes she is a little slow - it's a give and take process. When an animal is being aggresive towards, or attacking, animals (including humans) it normally wouldn't, that shows that the balance is out of order. When human life is at risk, we cannot wait for nature to restore the balance - we must act to preserve human life. The cougar population in our province is extremely healthy, and the killing of a few problem animals is a neccessary measure, as unsavoury as it may be.

The small girl was with her family, and at least one dog was taken right off the leash - adult human presence is not dissuading these cats.

Dru
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Post by Dru » Wed Jun 17, 2009 8:32 am

It's interesting to compare the current Squamish cougar situation with the typical summer Whistler bear situation.

In Whistler when a bear is killed it is usually humans who are blamed in the media and by the COs- for instance for leaving their garbage out or not cleaning a barbeque grill.

Is this just a difference in our view of the species - bears are more cuddly? Or does it have to do with the way cougars are 100% predator while bears are ominvores and usually carnivores by opportunity rather than necessity?

pinner
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Post by pinner » Wed Jun 17, 2009 11:37 am

I believe it is the latter; 'problem' bears tend to be more of a nuisance and a possible threat, whereas 'problem' cougars tend to be more of an immediate threat.

c-plus
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Post by c-plus » Wed Jun 17, 2009 11:56 am

maybe if one of the 2010 mascots was part cougar, people would be more sympathetic to them :?

i find it ironic that people living in a small township surrounded by wilderness should be so surprised that animals might exist around them. but then again, an awful lot of them seem to regard the wilderness as their own personal trash can, so i guess i should have expected it. [end rant]

smallman
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Post by smallman » Wed Jun 17, 2009 12:01 pm

This is an interesting idea. I do think bears are viewed as less threatening and more charismatic in general - kids are given teddy "bears" to play with not teddy cougars. And cougars in general are displayed as menacing animals "ie Florida Panthers, PG cougars logos in sports vs Boston Bruins, Minnesota Wild, or Vancouver Grizzlies. Also the fact that bears are primarily omnivores and scavenger carnivores in most circumstances makes them less menacing and also very dog like in their behavior. I think this makes it easy to anthropomorphize bear behaviors. And since many people treat their dogs better or as people, this is applied to bears as well. Cougars act like cats (aloof, loners) and in our society being a loner is associated with being anti-social and dangerous.

Now on the subject of Whistler's urban planning..... it was designed for bear human conflict (green space corridors linking suburban sprawl along fish bearing riparian features along with tons of tasty humans and their delicious smelling food.. them' good bear fixings).

enchanted
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Post by enchanted » Wed Jun 17, 2009 4:36 pm

t2climb wrote:I have heard the little girl is going to be fine. Killing every cougar and wild animal wondering through and around Squamish is not the answer. That will not eliminate the problem as there are always more wild animals to fill the void.
Keep small children close to you and leave your small dogs at home until the cougars move on. Once they realize there is nothing to eat they will move on.

Before houses were being built all over Squamish what do you think lived where those crappy new sub-divisions now exist?
Just because Maya and her mom got lucky and escaped the attack doesn't mean the next person will. Maya was about arms reach away from her mom and their large dog and the dogs were attacked were taken right off their leashes. So keeping the kids close isn't really making too big a difference now is it? We shouldn't have to fear for our kids when their in their own yards. I'm not saying kill all the cougars in the area, but if they are in populated areas on regular basis, as they have been, they are desperate and very dangerous. Time to make violin strings. I've lived here my whole life and it has never been like this.

pinner
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Post by pinner » Wed Jun 17, 2009 4:52 pm

I'm not sure if people are surprised by the fact that the wilderness so close to us occasionally wanders into what humans feel as their territory, so much as they find it disconcerting. I suppose it is a surprise to most people to have so many encounters at once, although for the reasons discussed in the other cougar thread, it may be predictable to those well versed in ecology and knowledgeable about their surroundings.

And I am intrigued by your theory about anthropomorphization of bears, as they do display characteristics humans find endearing when we see them on wildlife shows, for example, whereas one featuring cats is more likely to show them hunting than at play.

As far as your sports logo theory, however, the Wild logo isn't exactly a furry friend, and maybe not even a bear (the Wild as an organization won't actually declare what it is), although that is the popular choice, with cougar a distant second (I'm a dorky hockey blog reader). Looks like a p.o.ed badger to me
Image

while the Grizzlies logo was pretty ferocious too Image

pinner
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Post by pinner » Wed Jun 17, 2009 4:55 pm

Hey all, info from SORCA:

Good evening,

Town Hall Meeting Tonight

June 17, 2009 8:00 p.m.

Regarding Cougar Activity in Squamish

Where: Municipal Hall, Council Chambers, 37955 Second Avenue

The Ministry of Environment Conservation Officer Service is holding a
Town Hall Meeting tonight regarding the recent Cougar activity in
Squamish.

Last night's cougar attack has heightened the concern for safety
within the community and tonight is a chance for the community to
voice their concerns and to hear from the Conservation Officer
Service. Tonight's discussion will address the increase in cougar
sightings and activity, the concerns within the community and how to
keep our community safe.

There will be an opportunity for a question and answer period.

If you cannot make the meeting, watch it live on <

http://www.squamish.ca/
> www.squamish.ca
<http://sorca.ca/announce/admin/FCKedito ... quamish.ca>
(under watch council meetings live).

Contact: Meg Toom 604.815.5066

Thank you,

SORCA Executive.

paulc
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Post by paulc » Wed Jun 17, 2009 7:06 pm

webcast no worky?

P

pinner
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Post by pinner » Wed Jun 17, 2009 7:14 pm

yeah, not working for me either - on two different comps with 3 different programs.

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