Landowner kills cougar in at popular Gorge trailhead
A landowner shot and killed a cougar near the Angel's Rest Trailhead on the Historic Columbia River Highway on Thursday, June 6, after the cougar had reportedly killed two of a nearby homeowner's goats on Wednesday, June 5.
After the goats were killed, Multnomah County Sheriff's Office deputies investigated and found a cougar had entered a nearby home on Tuesday, June 4. Crews determined the cat showed little fear of humans, according to a press release from sheriff's office. Crews closed Angel's Rest Trailhead on June 5 while they attempted to locate the animal. The trail was reopened on June 6.
The Oregon Department Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) took possession of the slain cougar on June 6, and determined the dead cat was the animal that had hunted the livestock.
"Our lead biologist believes that it is the same one that killed the goats on the day prior," said Rick Swart, ODFW public information officer for the Northwest Oregon region. "The basis of that is conclusion is that teeth marks on the goat carcasses are roughly the same size as the teeth of the cougar."
The scientist also determined it was the correct animal because it returned to the sight where the goats had been killed, which is consistent with cougar behavior. After cougars kill their prey, they often bury the animal and return to feed on it later.
ODFW attempted to capture the cougar by setting up a live trap using a dead goat as bait.
Swart said it is legal to kill a cougar on a homeowner's land if it's destroying property.
A deputy had located the cougar on June 5 and attempted to shoot the animal, but the officer missed, and the animal ran off.
ODFW's biologist determined the cat was a 2-year-old female that weighed 61 pounds.
"So it was a younger animal, but certainly old enough to be out on its own," Swart said.
ODFW will conduct a necropsy on the animal.