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Two Brothers Attacked by Mountain Lion in California, One Dead

Image by Frank Parker via Depositphotos

It was in Northern California – on the outskirts of Sacramento – where two brothers, aged 18 and 21, were viciously attacked by a mountain lion, the El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office said.

At approximately 1:13 pm on March 23rd, the siblings, who are yet to be named, were out foraging for antlers until the youngest suffered several head injuries before calling 911 to report the harrowing news that his brother was nowhere to be seen.

Authorities said they later found the eldest, deceased, lying next to the mountain lion, who was swiftly euthanised to inspect its general health, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife said.

Image by Rejean Aline via Depositphotos

The other brother, noted by Sgt. Kyle Parker of the Sheriff’s Office is expected to fully recover after several surgeries.

Local officials state that around 50 puma attacks have happened since 1890, of which only six have been fatal. This is the first death since 2004.

It’s been over twenty years since a mountain lion attack was recorded within Californian borders, a state home to a plethora of deadly animals, including bears, rattlesnakes, and mountain lions – fatalities are uncommon.

Image by Frank Parker via Depositphotos

Similarly to Great Whites, these felines are known to mistake humans for prey, resembling them to deer. The last deadly attack in California occured while a cyclist was repairing his bike chain in the Whiting Ranch Wilderness Park.

Although there’s history, these fatal blows are few and far between.

Characteristics of Mountain Lions

Image by mikelane45 via Depositphotos

Mountain Lions, otherwise known as pumas or cougars, are resilient animals able to adapt to diverse terrains. You can find them in the rocky and unforgiving Chilean Andes or the dense woods of California’s Yosemite National Park and north of the border in Canada’s picturesque, and often snowy, Yukon Region.

They can scale thirty-foot trees in seconds, survive 22,000 feet above sea level, and camouflage within exposed, rocky terrains, making them unique apex predators adaptable to all conditions.

Their versatility is further highlighted by their diet, which ensures their survival across multiple habitats, from grasslands to forests. While deer is the golden meal, they’re known to hunt smaller mammals like raccoons, rabbits, and even livestock in human-dominated areas. Their hunting prowess lies in their stealth and agility. 

Image by londondeposit via Depositphotos

Mountain lions rely on ambush tactics, seamlessly stalking their prey before launching a swift, powerful attack. Their rapid speed and impressive leaping abilities make this easy, allowing them to take down animals much larger than themselves.

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