Woodburn Police responded to an early-morning report of a cougar sighting in town, Thursday.
Police spokesman Tommy Moore said the report came from a Woodburn School District employee at around 4:55 a.m. The caller said the cougar was seen in a residential area, walking on the Meridian Drive sidewalk and heading toward Tukwilla Drive.
Woodburn Police officers searched the area but did not find the cougar. Police alerted METCOM dispatch to advise affected neighborhoods of the sighting and urge caution.
Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife and the Woodburn School District were also notified. WPD requests that anyone who sights a cougar to call 503-982-2345.
If you see a cougar from a distance do not attempt to approach it. Cougars will often retreat if they are given the opportunity, so leave them a way to escape;
If approached by one, remain calm and stand your ground maintaining direct eye contact;
Back away slowly, and be sure not to run. Running may trigger a chase response in cougars, which could possibly lead to an attack;
If you're concerned that the cougar appears aggressive, raise your voice and speak firmly, and attempt to make yourself look larger by raising your arms clapping your hands.
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