In human terms, it’s called prior restraint.  In other words, you can’t be detained because someone believes you could commit a crime.  The same goes for wildlife.  I haven’t seen any updates from Idaho Fish and Game as I write this, so at last word, two young mountain lions are still wandering around Ketchum.  They’ve been spotted at least a dozen and a half times.

A dog was bitten by one of the lions, but the canine is expected to make a full recovery.  Since the animals haven’t gobbled a poodle or threatened school children, the Fish and Game policy is to live and let live.

Another aspect of the agency’s approach is to respect the neighborhoods.  Firing shots at wildlife in town isn’t the safest method for dealing with what for now is a nuisance.

Big cats that cause trouble are killed.  They can’t be relocated.  It would only place them in a rival’s territory.  If you own a house cat and another animal steps onto your deck, you’re already familiar with feline behavior.  It doesn’t always end well.  I can remember hot summer nights when I was a kid.  I would sleep with a window open.  I heard plenty of cats having territorial disputes.

One method for reducing conflicts with lions is to keep domestic cats inside and don’t let dogs wander.  Some of you bristle at that advice, but if you love your pets you won’t feed them to wild creatures.

There are four cats I see outside my living room window frequently.  Some are allowed outside throughout the night.  Many of my neighbors are transient and unaware we’ve had mountain lions in the same area.  Be careful!

Credit Idaho Fish and Game.
Credit Idaho Fish and Game.
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