The window of opportunity for the COS to respond to cougar issues is very limited, so the service asks the public to report conflict/sightings of cougars as soon as possible. (Black Press file photo)

Report cougar sightings ASAP, advises West Kootenay CO

Recent reports from Fruitvale describe a cougar stalking along Mill Road and near the BV Arena

Cougar sightings should be reported to conservation immediately – not a day-or-so later.

That’s the advice from local Conservation Officer Blair Thin following accounts of a recent cougar stalking along Old Mill Road and Green Road near the Beaver Valley arena.

“After a quick review of the reports we have received,” Thin began. “It appears that most of the complaints the COS (Conservation Officer Service) has received have been anecdotal and are at least 24 hours ‘old’ before being reported to us.”

The COS recommends reports of conflict and/or sightings of cougars be reported as soon as possible.

Thin said, “As the window of opportunity for the COS to respond to cougar issues is very limited.”

Of the handful of complaints recently received, he confirmed that all the cougar reports originated from Fruitvale.

“Which is not surprising,” he told the Trail Times.

“Considering Fruitvale is a rural area with a healthy population of prey species which would be the attractions for the predators.”

In the event of a cougar lurking near homes, Thin provided a list of recommendations on how to react.

First, the person must remain calm.

“The cougar is likely just passing through the neighbourhood and will hopefully move on,” Thin explained.

He reminds people to keep away from the cougar, tell others to do the same, and bring children and pets inside until the cougar has left.

“Feed pets indoors, or if fed outdoors, bring in any uneaten food as the smell of pet food may attract cougars in addition to the pets (potential prey) themselves,” Thin said.

“And keep your pets indoors, especially at night. Cats and small dogs that are left to free-range can become easy prey targets.”

He also advises homeowners to light walkways, remove any heavy vegetation or landscaping near the house, store garbage in cans with tight-fitting lids to minimize odours, and avoid feeding wildlife or landscaping with shrubs and plants that deer prefer to eat.

Additionally, homeowners should determine if the cougar has been attracted to the location or is in the locale as a result of poorly managed attractants being present, such as backyard chickens or unsecured garbage.

If a cougar is hanging around a residential neighbourhood, suspected of killing pets, or if the animal becomes threatening or aggressive towards people, Thin urges a call to the COS centre at 1.877.952.7277.

Just Posted

What you see …

If you have a recent photo to share email it to

Storm the Stairs and Trail Kidney Walk this weekend

Grapevine: Events in the Trail area for the week of Sept. 20 to Sept. 26

Kootenay Robusters end 18th paddling season

Women of Trail, Castlegar, Rossland, Christina Lake and Grand Forks came together in 2001

Military exercises may be audible in Trail

The exercises will be conducted in the Trail area from Thursday to Sunday

Council rollover inspires crop of hopeful politicians

Fourteen people vying for six council seats

Watch out for Pavement Patty: Drivers warned outside B.C. elementary school

New survey reveals unsafe school zones during 2018 back-to-school week

Horvat leads Canucks to 4-3 shootout victory over Kings

Vancouver dumps L.A. in NHL pre-season contest

Update: Search called off for missing plane between Edmonton and Chilliwack

Search efforts were concentrated along the Highway 5 corridor between Valemount and Kamloops

Why Whistler for ski jumping in 2026? Calgary proposal gets pushback

Calgary 2026 proposes re-using the 2010 ski jumping venue Whistler for that sport and nordic

Despite progress, threat of 232 tariffs dominates NAFTA negotiations

Any deal is seen to require congressional approval before Dec. 1 to survive new Mexican government

VIDEO: Hundreds line highway as family brings home body of B.C. teen

Northern B.C. showed their support by lining Hwy 16 as Jessica Patrick’s body returned to Smithers.

B.C. MP Todd Doherty receives award for saving man who collapsed on a plane

Conservative MP was flying from Vancouver to Prince George, B.C., in June last year

Alleged border jumper from Oregon facing 2 charges after police chase in B.C.

Colin Patrick Wilson charged with dangerous operation of motor vehicle, flight from a peace officer

More than 35 B.C. mayors elected without contest

No other candidates for mayor in the upcoming local election in 22 per cent of B.C. cities

Most Read