Young Cougar Shot Dead by Police in Saskatoon

Wildlife NewsYoung cougar shot dead by police in Saskatoon

Updated Wed. Oct. 8 2008 8:57 AM ET

The Canadian Press

SASKATOON -- A cougar that was shot and killed in Saskatoon was wearing a tracking collar from South Dakota State University.

Scientists at the university say the collar was put on the cougar about a year ago, and they were surprised the cat travelled so far in a short time. The distance to Saskatoon from Brookings, S.D., where the university is located, is more than 1,100 kilometres.

Police shot the cougar three times Tuesday in a backyard in southwest Saskatoon.

The shooting happened in John Rutherford's yard. He's upset that the cougar was killed, saying it wasn't threatening anyone.

"I was hoping that they would tranquilize it. But they said it takes too long, maybe five minutes, and the cat goes wild...then I asked about netting and he said, 'we're not prepared for that kind of thing,"' Rutherford said as he cleaned up the cougar's blood.

Gary Provencher of Saskatchewan Environment and Resource Management says tranquilizer darts don't always work effectively and authorities didn't want to take a chance with people's safety.

"Although the animal wasn't threatening when it was first observed, it was deemed that it could, if tranquilized, you know, get up and wander around or be unsafe to the public in that area," Provencher said, adding a children's daycare was within a block of the house. ... hub=Canada

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