Deer Attacked in Neighborhood

When Tuesday morning broke on Rossmere Street the worst was over.

"It looked pretty gruesome," said resident Jelaine April.

First period of home school had just begun for Jelaine and her kids.
Example one: the aftermath of an attack that happens in nature, played out in the street right outside their door.

"We had a good lesson of how wildlife...carnivores go for the gut first," said April.

But officials say what happened here is not so unusual when temperatures start to drop.

"We do get more calls in winter,” said division of wildlife spokesperson Michael Seraphin. He says it's a lesson in wildlife behavior. The heavy snows push deer out of the hills in search of food. When they move predators follow even if it's into a neighborhood.

"When the warmer weather comes and the deer start to disperse farther out away from people, then the mountain lions follow them away from town," said Seraphin.

The trouble for residents is, cold weather will keep a kill fresher longer, and predators get hungry.

"We do recommend homeowners do remove carcasses because the mountain lion will stick around," Seraphin said.

Still, Seraphin said as unpredictable as any wild animal is, there is little evidence to show mountain lions go out of their way to attack people. Jelaine believes if she can keep her kids safe, she'll let nature take its course.

"You know, it's just part of living in Colorado. We're not nervous about it," she said.

D-O-W wants to hear about mountain lions. Seraphin said it helps them keep track of what's going on especially if one of the animals repeatedly shows up in a neighborhood.

The Division of Wildlife also asks residents to help clean up. If an animal carcass is found in the street or sidewalk, it’s a local governmental responsibility to remove it. If it’s in a yard, it’s the homeowner’s responsibility.


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