Mtn Lion Attack in MT


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TallPine
November 13, 2007, 09:31 AM
Okay, this is for all those folks who say "it never happens", and if it does happen you will never have time to respond with a firearm.

This guy is lucky. He made a serious mistake by dropping his rifle and turning his back on the cougar. But he apparently had a handgun on him as well as his rifle.

Hunter near Kalispell scares off attacking mountain lion
By The Associated Press

KALISPELL - A hunter suffered cuts and scratches after being attacked by a mountain lion southeast of here over the weekend, state wildlife officials said Monday.

The attack happened early Sunday in the Squeezer Creek area, said Warden Chuck Bartos of the Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks.

Bartos said the hunter, whose name was not released, left his car, headed down a trail and later heard what sounded like the scream of a mountain lion.

A short time later, the hunter heard a growl and turned to see the lion 10 to 15 feet away. He dropped his rifle and hurried to get behind a tree, but the lion pounced on his back, knocking him into the tree, Bartos said in a news release. The lion then lost its grip, and the hunter was able to reach another gun and fire a shot. The spooked lion ran away.

The man fired several more shots and then headed back down the trail. He encountered several other hunters who helped him to his vehicle.

The hunter then drove himself to Kalispell and went to the hospital, where he received five stitches for cuts the lion clawed on his leg, Bartos said. The hunter also was treated for scratches on his back and shoulder, and for a few puncture wounds to the back of his head.

Bartos said the hunter's backpack was shredded and probably saved him from more serious injuries.

Wildlife conflict specialist Erik Wenum said the incident marks the first time in years that a lion attack resulting in injury has been documented in northwestern Montana.


http://www.billingsgazette.net/articles/2007/11/13/news/state/44-mountainlion.txt

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Fumbler
November 13, 2007, 09:44 AM
Wow. The only dangerous things we have here in NC are black bears and humans. Thats why I always carry a pistol with my rifle or shotgun.

Having the luxury of sitting here at a computer, I think his first response should have been shouldering the rifle.
I can't outrun my house cats when they're at full sprint, there's probably no way in heck I could outrun a mtn lion. It's fight or flight and flight isn't going to work.

230RN
November 13, 2007, 12:01 PM
Maybe that lion will go tell the other lions that they were wrong... that maybe humans aren't such easy prey after all.

Maybe the word'll get around to bears, too.

(Let's face it --through the anthropomorphism shown in all those kids' cartoons and Diznee movies, everybody knows these critters can talk to each other, right?)

ArmedBear
November 13, 2007, 12:07 PM
I'm going there in a couple weeks.

Repeat to myself... Don't drop the rifle!

Maybe I'll pack a revolver. I wasn't going to, but it sounds like it can't hurt.

XDKingslayer
November 13, 2007, 12:25 PM
I kinda agree with him dropping the rifle. That big rifle isn't going to be much good when the lion is attached to you. Kinda hard to get off a shot. Better off to use the pistol.

The lion was 10-15 feet away. I think the guy knew he was toast and dropped the rifle for that very reason. If I had a pistol on me I think I would have done the same thing.

Polishrifleman
November 13, 2007, 12:42 PM
At least throw it at the big cat!

I've been talking to a wildlife biologist here in Washington about a major study they are doing on cats on the East slope of the Cascades. Approximately 3 lions every hundred square miles 1 male and 2 breeding females. Males will defend their territory to the death and spend most of their time walking the fenceline. Females move about every week from kill to kill. Young stick with mom for about 2yrs. Although they have distinct terrritories they have been tracked moving all the way from Cle Elum to the Columbia river in the South.

Pretty interesting stuff.

jlpskydive
November 13, 2007, 12:52 PM
One thing that I have found that animals (including humans) don't like LOUD bangs. It tends to startle them, just like it did this Lion. I'm guessing the rifle wasn't loaded and that is why he dropped it. If it was loaded and he dropped it I see that as a mistake. I would at least try and get the shot off (just for the noise factor and to try and hit/scare it) as I KNOW I can't out run a Lion.

ArmedBear
November 13, 2007, 12:54 PM
My thoughts, exactly. Point the rifle in the cat's direction as best you can, fire, THEN drop it and take cover while drawing a handgun. My main hunting rifle fits well and points well.

You don't always have the opportunity to act perfectly in such a situation, though.

We're going to have single-shot BP cartridge guns, so we'll probably be carrying them unloaded until we spot our quarry. Who knows what sort of rifle he had.

Kenpo
November 13, 2007, 01:01 PM
I am from Kalispell - grew up hunting there. I was stalked by a lion for an hour or two, but never had any problems, we just kept our eyes open. Friend of mine took one with his shot gun when it attacked his dog. Most of the time they keep their distance.

LaEscopeta
November 13, 2007, 01:06 PM
A short time later, the hunter heard a growl and turned to see the lion 10 to 15 feet away. He dropped his rifle and hurried to get behind a tree, but the lion pounced on his back, knocking him into the tree, Bartos said in a news release. The lion then lost its grip, and the hunter was able to reach another gun and fire a shot. The spooked lion ran away.
I’m guessing the lion was not hunting in this particular incident; if it was and it was 10 to 15 away from prey, it would have pounced without growling first. I’m thinking it growled to try to chase away a threat/competitor. When the hunter turned his back and hurried away, the lion may have pounced to make the threat/competitor kept moving and not come back. Or maybe it is like throwing a stick in front of a dog; you run from a mountain lion and it is going to chase you. If (when) it catches you it might as well find out if you are lunch. The story says there were several hunters; I assume they would have looked for a blood trail. Since the story does not mention one I’ll assume the handgun shot missed and the noise chased the lion away. Or maybe the fact…
…the hunter's backpack was shredded…
convinced it 2 legged prey don’t taste good.

loose cannon
November 13, 2007, 01:08 PM
i think if i lived in mtn lion country my closest buddy would be a g29 10mm loaded with a hot 180grain jhp from doubletap ammo.

little guns shine when it gets close,idve lost the rifle as well.

if one uses a auto be sure the muzzle isnt in contact when fireing or it may not fire.taking this into consideration a snub 44mag may be a better choice.

ArmedBear
November 13, 2007, 01:19 PM
If I'm standing a few yards from a lion, facing it, and I have a loaded firearm in my hand, I'll worry about its intentions later.

S S S

Evolution favors organisms that respond to threats to their existence by eliminating them or escaping them successfully. My dogs can run 5 times as fast as I can, especially for any distance. That leaves intelligence and tool use as my primary survival mechanisms, when faced with a predator like a large cat. Gotta use 'em.

Havegunjoe
November 13, 2007, 02:56 PM
"One thing that I have found that animals (including humans) don't like LOUD bangs. It tends to startle them, just like it did this Lion. I'm guessing the rifle wasn't loaded and that is why he dropped it. If it was loaded and he dropped it I see that as a mistake. I would at least try and get the shot off (just for the noise factor and to try and hit/scare it) as I KNOW I can't out run a Lion."

This is what I thought too. I'll hip shoot in the direction of the cat before I would drop a loaded gun and hope the loud noise scares it off.

Leanwolf
November 13, 2007, 03:07 PM
HAVEGUNJOE - "I'll hip shoot in the direction of the cat before I would drop a loaded gun..."


Yep, if your rifle has a round in the chamber. Many hunters do not walk around in the woods and mountains with a round chambered. I don't.

But my holstered handgun is "Ready for Freddy." ;)

L.W.

telkontar
November 13, 2007, 03:25 PM
A growling cougar isn't ready to pounce. They are too fast and too silent to want to growl.

It is always hard to analyze such a sketchy scenario, but I'll do so anyway (assuming fear for myself or for my kids doesn't override all rational thought):

1 Don't turn my back on cougar.
2. Hip shot (at least) if rifle is loaded.
3.5 I would probably keep the rifle as a club if it were unloaded. (It was in the victim's hand.) It also would make me look like a larger animal and less like prey. I have picked up sticks and carried them across my shoulders in cougar country when unarmed.
3.5 Use the sidearm.

Havegunjoe
November 13, 2007, 03:30 PM
HAVEGUNJOE - "I'll hip shoot in the direction of the cat before I would drop a loaded gun..."


Yep, if your rifle has a round in the chamber. Many hunters do not walk around in the woods and mountains with a round chambered. I don't.

But my holstered handgun is "Ready for Freddy."

L.W.

Many do leanwolf, I do. Flipping the safety and firing a round I would think is faster than dropping the rifle, unsnapping the strap over my handgun, drawing and firing. I haven't tested this mind you I'm just guessing it would be faster.

TallPine
November 13, 2007, 03:34 PM
I have picked up sticks and carried them across my shoulders in cougar country when unarmed.

You're supposed to tap the sticks together as you walk. It keeps the mountain lions away. :D


We've had big kitty sign in our yard all summer long (2-3x /wk). A year or so ago, one of our horses got scratched on her flank - apparently she jumped away as the cat pounced. Anymore, whenever we are outside at night, we make sure to have a light and keep looking and shining it all around, not just ahead.

Crunker1337
November 13, 2007, 05:13 PM
Must have been quite a harrowing experience, I'm glad the guy is going to come out okay.

ArmedBear
November 13, 2007, 05:14 PM
You're supposed to tap the sticks together as you walk. It keeps the mountain lions away.

Maybe just hike with tap-dancing shoes and save yourself some effort?:D

That might put a damper on hunting, though. So would the sticks.

El Tejon
November 13, 2007, 06:02 PM
Behold the powerful and mighty kitty (I mean just the mere sight caused him to drop his rifle *snicker*)--IT LEFT HIM WITH 5 STITCHES!!!:D

I've given myself more stitches running a wood screw through my knee.

The next what gun for imaginary pumas thread, I'm typing in BandAids and a kiss from mom.;)

Forget carrying sticks around, just lay off the bottle, you won't see as many bears and pumas!:)

meef
November 13, 2007, 08:29 PM
Maybe that lion will go tell the other lions that they were wrong... that maybe humans aren't such easy prey after all.

Maybe the word'll get around to bears, too.

(Let's face it --through the anthropomorphism shown in all those kids' cartoons and Diznee movies, everybody knows these critters can talk to each other, right?):scrutiny:

Well........ On a slightly tangential note to the thread, I've got an anecdote that still leads me to ponder that statement.

I had a place in the country on 10 acres with a really big barn. I'm not a rancher or farmer so it didn't get used like a barn might be expected. But I did keep things like riding mower, other yard tools/stuff and an occasional vehicle in there. The barn had no front doors. It seemed like all of the pigeons in the county really liked my barn and I couldn't harass them enough to chase them away. My barn had pigeon poop by the ton. There wasn't anything in there that wasn't splattered and streaked with it. Yuck! :barf:

"Out, out damned pigeons!"

Okay, I'd make a big, foolish fuss and they'd scatter and sometimes even fly away. As soon as I left, they'd come back. I hated those damned birds.

I couldn't afford, and didn't want to buy actual barn doors for that huge opening, so I pretty well closed it off with the kind of plastic mesh you put on your trees to keep birds from the fruit.

That made it difficult, but not impossible for the more determined pigeons to get in. Every so often I'd go out there with my single shot .22 with CB caps and shoot whatever pigeon had managed to get in. The barn cat liked that immensely. Seemed warm pigeon carcass was a real delicacy for her.

But killing a pigeon now and then didn't stop them from continuously trying to get in, with annoying success at that.

Then one day I found three of them in there. Off I went and fetched the .22.

My first shot hit one and knocked it down from the rafters but didn't kill it. I worked the bolt and ejected the empty and inserted another round. In doing so I had to take my eyes off the pigeons. The two that weren't hit had hastily beat wings back out the way they got in. The one I did hit, I assumed also made an escape because I never did find it. I also figure the cat didn't get it because she always left me a pile of pigeon feathers and lips (don't ask me why she wouldn't eat the lips) in the middle of the barn where she liked to chow down.

Now here's the strange part. After years of putting up with the pests, I never had another pigeon in that barn again. EVER. I never saw another pigeon on my property. The nearest neighbor lived about a thousand feet from me and I think he inherited the pigeon swarm in his barn, but they never came back to mine.

This was the only time I had shot pigeons in the barn and had any witnesses (pigeon witnesses, that is) live to "tell" about it.

So.... can those critters talk to each other?

:confused:

Gotta say, that's a mighty weird coincidence if not.

yesit'sloaded
November 13, 2007, 08:31 PM
I finally found a reason to get a Krinkov. Lions, big mountain lions.

gunjunky
November 13, 2007, 09:09 PM
Having been in a lion engagement I would not be one that thinks in never happens.

I did not drop my gun but I too made mistakes. I tried to scare the cat away DUMB. Lesson learned, mercy is a mistake if applied under the wrong circumstances. Should have taken the easy broad-side shot instead of the charging-through-the-trees (boy he is fast) shot.

By the way 230gr Fedral hydra shock and Glock 21 = good cat medicine.

CB900F
November 13, 2007, 11:35 PM
Fella's;

If you've never seen a mountain lion in full run, you literally cannot believe how fast they are. You don't need a hand howitzer to dispatch one, just an everyday SD type will do the job just fine provided you can hit what you're shooting at. They aren't just larger versions of the house cat either, it's a major error to assume they are & will act like a house cat.

We've had cattle clawed on our land. My son's found cat tracks on his own bootprints while hunting on our land. I've seen them, albeit fleetingly, on our land.

I don't know if the hunter was a two-year resident from the west coast, or a life-long Montanan. But I highly suspect that if you haven't BTDT your very own self, you're just typin'.

900F

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