Officials from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife have called off the search for a mountain lion that attacked a 5-year-old kid on a rural Northern California hiking trail, citing the animal’s low likelihood of being captured.
DNA tests revealed that a mountain lion was responsible for the attack in San Mateo County, south of San Francisco, on Tuesday, according to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife on Friday.
However, efforts to locate and catch the lion were hindered by the fact that detectives were denied access to private property close to the attack location.
“Lack of access, bad weather, and the nomadic nature of mountain lions have reduced the likelihood of a successful capture,” said Capt. Patrick Foy, spokesperson for the department.
Tuesday evening, just before 7 p.m., the kid was on the route near Tunitas Creek Road and had run ahead of his mother and grandparents when he was attacked and pushed to the ground by a large feline, according to authorities and family members.
The cougar let the boy go after his mother, Suzie Trexler, charged it, then fled.
Foy stated that the child wasn’t bitten. Amie Wagner, his aunt, told the Chronicle that he sustained facial lacerations and a cracked bone near his eye.
At a local hospital, he was treated.
Attacks on humans by mountain lions are uncommon. In more than a century of record-keeping, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife has documented approximately twenty confirmed assaults, of which only three were deadly.
In September of last year, a 7-year-old kid was bitten by a mountain lion while walking with his father in a park near Santa Clarita, California, at dusk. The toddler was treated for comparatively minor wounds after the father chased away the beast.
The most recent instance prior to Tuesday occurred in September when a cougar attacked a 7-year-old boy in Pico Canyon Park in Los Angeles County. Also, surviving was that infant.
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