Mountain lions in the Wood River Valley have forced wildlife managers to make some hard choices this winter.
According to Idaho Fish and Game, the predators continue to hunt for food in the valley – despite the fact that elk and mule deer have mostly remained in higher elevation winter foraging areas.
In January, Fish and Game killed two mountain lions because of concerns over human safety. The first one was euthanized January 20 after the animal was found on an airfield at the Hailey Friedman Memorial Airport.
Airport staff told wildlife officials that a commercial flight was unable to land on schedule because the cat was on the runway – and the plane was circling overhead waiting for the all-clear to land. In a press release, Fish and Game says they decided to kill the animal after first trying to scare it off the runway.
Four days later, officials got a call about a second lion that had killed a dog from a fenced-in yard. Fish and Game set a trap, and the next day, a female lion was trapped and then killed on-site. Officials warn folks to be extra cautious with their pets and livestock in the evening when mountain lions are more likely to attack.
Find reporter Frankie Barnhill on Twitter @FABarnhill
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