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Recent cougar sightings a popular topic of discussion in Waukesha County

Residents of Eagle are on edge
Posted at 5:53 PM, Mar 02, 2018
and last updated 2018-03-02 18:53:31-05

A large cat captured by a trail camera caused a scare in the Village of Eagle. 

Police Chief Gregg Duran said a citizen alerted him to the video of what he thought was a cougar. 

"I saw this thing and thought, 'Oh, that must be a cougar,'" Duran said. "We contacted the DNR right away and had them look at it." 

Scott Walter, a specialist in large carnivores who works for the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, confirmed the cat captured on video was not a cougar. 

Duran said it's better to be safe than sorry.

The DNR said late last month that a cougar had been spotted in Brookfield, as well as in Menomonee Falls. The agency believed both sightings were of the same, large cat. 

Walter said the cougar is likely a male that wandered over from Nebraska, North Dakota or South Dakota and will remain on the move until he finds a female mate. 

Walter said cougars have shorter coats than the cat captured on video in the Village of Eagle. 

He added they're also much larger. 

"An adult cougar will be upwards of five feet in body length from the nose tip to the base of the tail," Walter said. 

Walter said cougars are usually most active at night. 

He said there's no guarantee the cougar spotted in Waukesha County is still in the state. But Walter added any civilians who come across the cougar shouldn't approach it. 

"There's been no signs from this individual cougar of any aggressive behavior at all, but the best thing to do is stay away and just report it," Walter said.