Sunday, August 29, 2010

Mountain Lion Stalks OK Town

Boley, OK - Locals have spotted a mountain lion ranging about the small town in Okfuskee county. Chief of Police Virgil Green has contacted state officials about the situation and is urging residents to be cautious and keep their pets indoors.

While researching my book, Strange State: Mysteries and Legends of Oklahoma, I read scores of accounts and official statements from state wildlife officials who swore these creatures weren't in the eastern part of the state and only rarely penetrated the west. To their understanding, the mountain lion was basically long-gone from Oklahoma.

However, this didn't stop reports from coming in. And a rash of sightings in multiple states over the past couple of years seems to be changing the tunes of officials everywhere. Fewer and fewer reports have been met with a professional but nonetheless condescending dismissal.

If wildlife officials are now taking reports more seriously, this could mean populations of these cats are on the rise. This bodes well for the health of the species, but will doubtlessly pose problems as they continue to cross paths with humans.

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