Residents of Bruno are advised to be on the lookout for a cougar sighted within town limits. Town administrator Collette Radcliffe confirmed the report by a local business owner on the west edge of town. RCMP and Environment Ministry Officers have been contacted.
Conservation officers were not available by press time to confirm the sighting. However, the Ministry of Environment Senior Communications Val Nicholson forwarded the following statement:
Cougars are a natural part of the landscape in Saskatchewan. Cougar/human conflicts are rare as cougars are generally shy and wary of humans, and typically avoid human activity and populations. Although chances of seeing a cougar are slim, residents need to be aware of their existence in the area and practice caution and safety when outdoors.
If you do encounter a cougar, make sure the cougar knows you are not potential prey – stand up, make yourself appear as large as possible, shout loudly and throw something to distract the animal. Then back away to a safe distance while maintaining eye contact with the cougar.
If a cougar does make contact, fight back, use any weapon that you can and don’t give up. Never play dead with a cougar. After the cougar has left, keep watching for it until you reach a place of safety.
If you have an aggressive encounter with a cougar or other predator, and/or if public safety is at risk, call the Turn in Poachers and Polluters (TIPP) line at 1-800-667-7561 or from your SaskTel cell phone at #5555.
More information about wildlife safety is available at saskatchewan.ca/wildlife-issues.