Are Cougar Sightings Rare In Benton County Washington?

Three recent cougar sightings in Benton County have residents on the alert.


Why Are We Seeing More Cougars In Benton County Washington?

The advent of having door and security cameras has residents in Benton County catching the felines as they prowl the night and three more cougar sightings have been reported as of late.

The problem is that the cougars are getting closer and closer to town.

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife says that most cougars stay in forested areas but on occasion are passing through our area

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An article from KEPR-TV noted three recent sightings of cougars in Benton County that have residents on notice.

washington state of natural resources
washington state of natural resources

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife has released tips on making sure that you aren't inadvertently welcoming cougars to your front porch.

Department of Fish and Wildlife recommends keeping garbage and pet food out of sight so that you aren't inviting the cougars onto your property as they search for food.

If you do encounter a cougar, here are a few tips to keep in mind:

  1. Stay calm and stand your ground. Do not run. Running may trigger the cougar's instinct to chase and attack.
  2. Make yourself look bigger by raising your arms and standing on your tiptoes. Open your jacket if you are wearing one.
  3. Make loud noises and shout at the cougar. This will help you appear more intimidating.
  4. Throw stones, sticks, or anything else you can find at the cougar. This will show the cougar that you are not prey.
  5. If the cougar approaches you, use bear spray if you have it. Aim for the cougar's face.
  6. If the cougar attacks, fight back with everything you've got. Use rocks, sticks, or your bare hands if necessary. Try to protect your head and neck.
  7. If you are with other people, stay together and act as a group. Cougars are less likely to attack a large group.

You can read more details about the sightings here.

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