I have been writing and reading a lot about the resurgent cougar population here in North America. The story of the cougar being shot in the city of Chicago by the CPD interests me greatly. I am still waiting to hear if this is the same cougar that had been spotted here in Southern Wisconsin. If that is true, that cat walked from South Dakota, through Minnesota, Southern Wisconsin, perhaps through Wilmette, IL, and south to Chicago. Amazing.
I am no defender of the famously corrupt CPD, but they did the right thing by shooting that animal. If they did not it would only be a matter of time before the lion started eating dogs, cats, and humans – especially in an area like Chicago that doesn’t have enough of the lion’s normal things to chew on, like small game and most importantly, deer.
The Chicago cops could have made up the story about the cougar charging the officers before they put it down, but it could also be true. Either way they did everyone a huge favor by killing it. I am interested to see the reaction by many people on blogs and in the media. Many, many people who don’t understand how these animals operate are beating up on the CPD for their actions.
As I was reading some of these reactions I came upon this gem from this story in the LA Times:
I am totally disgusted by Chicago Police and will report them to PETA for their horrible attack on an innocent animal.
After cleaning up my computer screen from the spray of vitamin water that I expelled, I chuckled for about five more minutes and then came up with four words to respond to this poor, misguided individual: GOOD LUCK WITH THAT.
Cross Posted at LITGM.
8 thoughts on “Quote of the Day”
Predatory animals must fear and avoid humans for the safety of both the animals and humans. Predatory animals raised with humans and the returned to the wild are many more times likely to attack humans than animals with no human contact. Once animal becomes comfortable around humans it never loses that fear. Experience with bears in North America and lions in Africa has shown that merely relocating individual animals does not work. The animals return to human areas as fast as they can.
It’s sad but it just goes to prove that mother nature is a bitch.
About thirty years ago, I was in a barn at a children’s zoo not open to the public (my brother was then dating a gal whose father worked there). There was a young cougar in the barn, very tame, very friendly, an hand-raised orphan. However, when I squatted down to pet some other animal, this cougar jumped on my back and started clawing and biting my neck. It took two people to pull her off of me.
It was an extremely frightening experience.
We spend our summers in northern Minnesota. We’ve had numerous problems with black bear. One year, a mother and her two little cubs showed up at a birthday party at our home to eat the leftover cake and ice cream in the garbage which was in the garage. This was at the same time, 12 children all under the age of seven were running around the yard playing tag. Had one of the children gotten between the bear and her cubs, I don’t know what could have happened.
One youngest son was stomped upon by a “tame” deer at a Wild Animal Park. I caution all parents about those places.
“Had one of the children gotten between the bear and her cubs, I don’t know what could have happened.” I know exactly what would have happened.
One of the key things that people who live close to predators need to do is to keep their garbage/food waste secure and not attractive to predators. In the book I just reviewed, a mixture of Lifeboy soap and water sprayed on vegetation is mentioned as a tremendous repellent to deer (and good for flowers I am told). When I was young we had cats and racoons that used to tear up our garbage at night – we started soaking the whole works with ammonia at night – problem solved.
If the wild animals know of a free and easy food source they will keep coming back to it. Then they get acclimated to the surroundings, and will eventually look to the humans as prey, or a threat, as in the case of a child wandering between a mother bear and her cubs.
As for the cougar kept in captivity, it was only doing to you what it is hard wired to do – kill. I can’t quite understand how anyone could raise one of these things as a cub – only one generation removed from the wild – and think it will grow up as a housecat.
Because most people are stunningly stupid when it comes to nature. Bears and cougars are cute, therefore they won’t hurt you. Only ugly animals are dangerous.
We are obligated to respect animal life, but not at the expense of human life. But as society becomes more detached from the reality of nature, we find more examples of these morons who think that cougars are just big, cuddly house cats. Until their dogs are killed or, God forbid, one of their children is injured or killed. And then they will look for a convenient scapegoat. Of course that would be the developers who built too close to “the wilderness,” or the police who didn’t kill the beast when they had the chance.
On a smaller scale, we have hundreds of geese in our small town that have never learned to migrate. And with abundant food available, and no predators, many of our public spaces are covered in goose droppings (and aggressive geese!). But we couldn’t possibly cull these animals and use the food to feed the less fortunate, we must carefully test each egg for viability and then shake the ones at a particular stage of development, but carefully replace without damage those that are farther along.
I could spend an afternoon with a varmint rifle and end the problem, and feed hundreds of our less fortunate neighbors, but that would be showing insufficient respect for the sanctity of goose life.
Iamnotachef – too bad they won’t put you in charge of the goose issue, goose is mighty tasty…in the book I recently reviewed the people of Boulder created a situation where the geese didn’t need to migrate and were similarly rewarded with truckloads (literally) of goose droppings. Sometimes when you mess with nature, the results are not pretty.
I am familiar with a situation at a condo where, several times a year, wild ducks move into the swimming pool area. These are usually Muscovy ducks, which are larger than mallards. They leave droppings everywhere and eventually learn that they can swim in the pool. The ducks stay away when people are using the pool, but that’s a mere fraction of the day, so the condo staff have to do a lot of extra cleaning. Of course it’s illegal to kill the ducks, and the condo board will not break any laws. The only options are to train residents to chase away ducks when they see them and, in cases where the ducks refuse to leave over a long period, hiring a licensed trapper at at least $500 a pop to relocate them.
I’ve always thought that bringing some alligators onto the grounds would solve the problem for good, but then there would be other costs.
Any thoughts that the CPD cops acted in self-defense were dispelled when a “throw-down” pistol was found near the dead animal.
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