Idaho Fish and Game report a mountain lion was shot and killed less than one-half mile away from the Bruneau Elementary School.
The cat was spotted about 8:00 a.m. Wednesday morning in a tree on school grounds. School authorities immediately went into lockdown and contacted the Fish and Game Office in Nampa.
“We did not have a conservation officer immediately available to respond,” Fish and Game wildlife manager Rick Ward noted. “We made a call to the Owyhee County Sheriff’s Office and requested that Sheriff’s office personnel dispatch the cat as a matter of public safety.”
According to Fish and Game, the cat ran from the tree but remained nearby. A houndsman was called and treed the lion. Lethal action against the cat was taken given the proximity of the school, and the behavior of the cat said Fish and Game in a press release.
“Lion sightings are fairly common in the Bruneau area,” Ward said. “But we were unwilling to take any chance with a cat that seemed comfortable spending time in a schoolyard.”
They went on to say the mountain lion was an 82-pound female, appeared to be in good health, but had suffered a previous break in a front leg which may have impacted the cat’s ability to hunt natural prey.