UVic warns of cougar sighting in wooded area of campus

UVic warns of cougar sighting in wooded area of campus
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The University of Victoria is warning students of a cougar sighting on school property on Thursday evening.

UVic says a cougar was spotted in Mystic Vale around 8:45 p.m. on April 4.

Mystic Vale is a wooded area on the southeast side of campus that features popular walking trails.

The university says “this is the time of year when occasional cougar sightings are reported on the UVic campus.”

“While cougars are generally shy and elusive animals and rarely attack humans, a hungry cougar may come into contact with people during its search for food, usually in the hours between dusk and dawn when cougars are most active,” said the university in a notice Thursday.

Anyone who spots a cougar on campus is asked to call campus security at 250-721-7599.

Cougar safety tips

If you encounter a cougar, WildsafeBC recommends keeping calm and never running away from the animal.

You should try to make yourself look as big as possible and slowly back away while always keeping the cougar in sight and not turning your back on it.

Children and small animals should also be picked up to prevent them from running.

“Never run or turn your back as sudden movements may provoke an attack,” says WildsafeBC.

If a cougar seems aggressive, WildsafeBC recommends yelling at it, maintaining eye contact, and using anything on hand as a weapon, like nearby sticks or rocks.

FROM JANUARY: Safety reminders issued after cougar attacks livestock in Metchosin

Adam ChanAdam Chan

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