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Video: Authorities Kill Mountain Lion in Sunland

Fish and Game officials shot and killed a mountain lion in nearby Sunland. Do you think they overreacted by killing the animal?

An 80-pound mountain lion was fatally shot by Fish and Game officials near the Angeles National Forest in Sunland, according to KTLA5

Sunland resident Marleen Hitt saw the large cougar near her garage Friday afternoon and called 911, KTLA reported.

The 2 to 3-year-old animal hid near bushes in a yard when police shot at the cougar to make it run away.

"I heard five shots spread out, then I knew that they had found it," Hitt said. 

The warden arrived and shot the mountain lion, according to KTLA. 

"The game warden felt that the situation warranted the most extreme measure for the safety of the lion, the safety of the people around it," Andrew Hughan of California Fish and Game said. 

Officials say that this case was different from the .

"Shooting an animal with a dart is not like the movies. you hit the animal, the animal becomes very aggitated, very angry, very quickly. And it doesn't just fall down in one minute and go to sleep," Hughan said. 

La Cañada sees occasional visits from mountain lions, bears, and other wildlife. City Councilman Don Voss pointed out during a heated discussion last year over the that La Cañada is based at the foothills of the Angeles National Forest, and residents will have run-ins with wildlife. 

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J McNally April 26, 2012 at 12:38 AM
For the "safety of the lion?'' WTH?
Chris Evans April 26, 2012 at 01:41 PM
Let's see .. it would have taken at least five times the dosage to bring that bear than the 80 pound cat, the bear coud do 50 times more damage than the cat could do, so of course, the cat gets killed. Huh? I agree with J McNally, as the "safety of the lion" was apparently never part of the equation..had this cougar been reported attacking anything or anyone? Has some exurbanite had her cockapoo carried away? When we encroach upon an animal's natural habitat, shouldn't we give them the benefit of the doubt .. or at least the dart? Unless there's a lot more to this story, I think the authorities blew it
James Stoker April 26, 2012 at 03:01 PM
The story is a bit sketchy, but the real issue likely began when the police fired shots "to make it run away." The police probably turned a tense situation into a dangerous encounter with a frightened, cornered animal. The fish and game people only brought the situation to its inevitable conclusion. Anything less than a fatal shot would have put too many people at risk.
Zoiderella April 26, 2012 at 07:22 PM
James Stoker, you are right. Frighten the animal to run away to where??? How can you control/direct a frightened wild animal. They set up a moving shot. They could have tried a tranquilizer dart and THEN if it started to run, there were plenty of guns trained on it to do the inevitable but it could have been given a chance.
Taylor Carbonetti April 26, 2012 at 08:41 PM
Ummm....just reading in the LA Times about how they are looking for information regarding a "mutilated mountain lion", even offering a $2,000 reward. Apparently they are a "specially protected species" Ok, so what's wrong with this picture? Am I missing something? The authorities shot and killed the lion in Sunland after first making it run away (apparently that's ok), but now they want to prosecute the person (or persons) who killed the one in the LA Times story. Anyone see anything strange about this? http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2012/04/2000-dollar-reward-mutilated-mountain-lion.html

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