A search is underway in Omaha, Nebraska for a mountain lion that was seen on a home security camera. wandering through a residential area Monday, authorities said.
The mountain lion was recorded wandering around a home in southwest Omaha around 4:15 a.m. local time (5:15 a.m. ET), the Nebraska Parks and Game Commission said in a statement. Press release.
Police and wildlife professionals from the commission have launched a search but have so far been unable to locate the puma, he said.
According to Game and Parks’ Mountain Lion Response Plana mountain lion found within the boundaries of a township «will be killed if it can be done safely, to ensure public safety.»
However, the commission noted in its press release that puma attacks are rare.
Anyone who encounters a mountain lion is cautioned never to approach the animal, says the US Department of Agriculture Forest Service in its website. It also provides information on the steps to follow in the event of an encounter.
Cougars are native to Nebraska, but were «eliminated» in the 1890s, according to the Nebraska Park and Game Commission. They later returned through the natural expansion of populations in Colorado, South Dakota, and Wyoming.
Now, they can typically be found in three areas of Nebraska, including Pine Ridge, the Niobrara River Valley and Wildcat Hills, according to the commission.
The commission approved hunting of mountain lions in the Pine Ridge area beginning in 2014, saying on its website that mountain lion population management was «focused on ensuring the long-term sustainability of the species, while allowing for hunting opportunities where appropriate.»