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ANIMALS | Terrifying encounter

Runner survives attack by choking mountain lion

Cheryl Santa Maria
Digital Reporter

Wednesday, February 6, 2019, 12:25 PM - A Colorado man is lucky to be alive after fending off a mountain lion attack with his bare hands.

The unidentified man was jogging on a trail on Tuesday when he heard a noise and turned back. That's when the animal attacked, according to local wildlife officials.

He sustained serious bites to his wrist and face, but was able to fight back and choke the animal to death.

Officials say the running likely triggered the young lion's hunting instincts. 

(RELATED: Wild cats that can be found in Canada)

The lion was less than a year old and tested negative for rabies, Colorado Parks and Wildlife confirmed on Twitter.

Rebecca Ferrell, a spokeswoman for Colorado Parks and Wildlife, told AP an investigation confirmed the details of man's account.

She added he did "exactly what experts recommend" when faced with a rare mountain lion attack by fighting back as aggessively as possible.

Experts also advise getting back up on your feet if knocked over and looking for large objects that can be used as a weapon.

The man was hospitalized but is expected to make a full recovery.

On Wednesday, officials observed additional mountain lions near the scene of the attack and closed the trail out of an "abundance of caution," according to a Tweet by Colorado Parks and Wildlife.

There is a large population of mountain lions on Colorado. Since 1990, they have injured 16 people and killed three, according to the Associated Press.


Mountain lions are evenly distributed throughout Canada, It is not considered an endangered species by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature -- but the cat is protected against hunting along most of its range, although regulated hunting is still permitted in parts of Canada and the U.S.

It is by far the largest wild cat in Canada with males weighing up to 220 lbs. In comparison, bobcats and lynxes typically weigh less than 30 lbs.


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