Cougar attack on toddler sets off debate

- September 2nd, 2011

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The Vancouver SUN, earlier this week, reported on a serious cougar attack to an 18-month old toddler in Vancouver Island’s Pacific Rim National Park.

Here is the article by Cindy E. Harnett:

An 18-month-old boy, who was pulled by family members from the claws of a cougar in Vancouver Island‘s Pacific Rim National Park Monday night, is in serious condition after being flown to B.C. Children’s Hospital in Vancouver.

“He is being monitored closely,” said hospital spokeswoman Tracy Tang.

Julien Sylvester was walking just three metres in front of his grandfather and another adult when the cougar lunged from a forested area at the edge of the beach, Parks Canada confirmed.

The cougar was momentarily daunted by Julien’s grandfather, then lunged at the boy’s four-year-old sister. The cougar did not make contact with the girl, who was unharmed, Parks Canada spokeswoman Arlene Armstrong said.

“The cougar surprised them really quickly from the forested edge,” Armstrong said. “It was a very quick encounter.”

The grandfather immediately “got the child to medical attention,” Armstrong said.

Julien was taken to nearby Tofino hospital and then airlifted to B.C. Children’s Hospital, where his mother Sarah Hagar remained by his bedside on Tuesday.

“The family is focusing all of their energy on their son’s recovery and are asking the media to please respect their privacy today and in the days ahead, so they can concentrate on their son’s health,” said Tang, in a statement.

The attack occurred at 6 p.m. Monday night at Swim Beach in the Kennedy Lake day-use area of the national park, about 16 kilometres east of the community of Ucluelet, B.C.

Four officers from the Conservation Officer Service, tracking dogs, Ucluelet RCMP, and West Coast Search and Rescue launched a full-scale search Monday night to track and trap the cougar. About 20 Parks Canada staff are also involved in tracking, co-ordinating the search and communications. The search continued Tuesday.

If found, the cat will be killed because it poses a public safety risk, according to Parks Canada.

“The family members did everything right,” said Armstrong. “There’s no indication the family is at fault.”

Family members who witnessed the brief attack acted properly by maintaining eye contact with the big cat and aggressively scaring if off, Armstrong said.

Although the latest word is the young boy is expected to make a full recovery, Doctor’s say the child did suffer brain damage from the cougar’s jaw and teeth which had pierced his skull.

Now (as expected) the Animal Rights ‘do-gooders’ are out in full force running to the animal’s defence, following Parks Canada’s decision to hunt the cougar; labelling it as a ‘serious threat’.  

There are comments out there like; “The fact this cat did attack a child shows there is something wrong with it” and “A healthy, well-fed cougar would not attack a child in the company of two adults” and “It’s not the cougar’s fault for hunting for food”

You already know my thoughts, so what do you think?

Should any predator (be it a cougar, bear, wolf, coyote) which has attacked a human, be hunted and destroyed, or should it be left alone because it was only acting on its natural instincts?

Please feel free to way-in and share your opinion.

Outdoorsguy

Categories: Animal Rights

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116 comments

  1. chessy says:

    What you going to talk about tomorrow Jeff, pam anderson going into big brother house…. for some one who don’t eat meat she sure does like non organic material…

  2. Rob St Denis says:

    Jeff, you saying you don’t bring the laptop and sat phone out in the bush to check work email?

  3. jeff.morrison says:

    Alain D, thanks for pushing us over that elusive 100 mark!

    Sounds like you’ve been doing your ‘hunting homework’…guess those critters dont have a chance now.

    Outdoorsguy

  4. jeff.morrison says:

    nahh Chess, think I’ll give the ‘antis’ a break..we’ve done enough teaching for this month.

    Outdoorsguy

  5. jeff.morrison says:

    Rob, I wont be bringing a sat phone to the bush…but I MAY bring the laptop this year..just so the guys can all see the trailcam images..that will
    be a first! Of course, it wont be leaving the camp.

    Outdoorsguy

  6. Iggy says:

    today we had our last meeting before we leave, shot the rifles and planned the trip and meals, found out one of the regulars can’t go so we are down to 6 guys.
    E-mailed the outfitter who flew in our beer, water and pop order today on a back haul taking out the last fishermen. All set, no one will be in camp to disturb the mating moose. Cooked my meal and my two soups this afternoon. All set but the packing. Should all work out well.
    Now it’s just 25 more sleep filled nights dreaming about that big bull or the cow and the calf. The countdown has begun.
    Any one know of any real good adventure book that I can buy to read on my watch?

    2 bull tags one cow woooohooooo

  7. Trapper says:

    QUOTE: ” I’ve come to the conclusion that the big bad hunter is not so bad after all, just different. You guys even has a sense of humour! One last thing: Please, please try to make it a clean kill, with as little suffering as possible” END QUOTE

    Thanks Carol, I hope you enjoy your time in the woods as much as we do, The best time of year is upon us and rest assured we all want a clean kill.

    ps: I have to say this though, I can’t help but wonder what lured Carol to this blog. She doesn’t seem to be the psycho anarchist animal rights person we have done battle with before…..Then she goes on to talk about the Big “O”, and now the fact that she owns a Miata….hmmmmm I wonder if maybe her Google search simply contained the word ‘Cougar’……….Carol, what are you doing the third week of Oct and can you wash dishes as well as cook veggie pizza ?

  8. GPG says:

    Iggy: you might want to try “The Last Guide” from Ron Crobett. I really liked it. It’s about a fishing guide in Algonquin Park. Otherwise, I’ve heard Hap Wilson’s new book Grey Owl is very good. I’ve read many of Hap’s books and canoeing guides. He guided Pierce Brosnan when he was here shooting the movie Grey Owl, and it’s Hap’s own experience of this adventure. I might bring that one mysef actually.

    Trapper: Nice parting shot!

    My hunting preparations are coming to a close soon. The gear and beer are all packed in the truck, boots are sealed, axe and knives sharpened, bow and arrows all set, maps printed, GPS is ready, hunting clothes washed and sealed, food in the freezer ready for the cooler. I’m almost all set.
    What’s left? final food purchases (fruit, milk, etc.) and packing the coolers, strapping 2 canoes to the truck, and final packing in the truck box.

    We’re leaving Ottawa Friday morning for Timmins. The hunt group are all meeting up at my cousin’s for the night, then off to the camp first thing Saturday morning. Among the group, we have 1 bull, 2 cows, and 3 calves seals. Basically, if you get a clean shot, take it!! It seems unreal after all the preparations over the past months, that we’re only a few days away!!!

  9. Iggy says:

    I’ve already read Ron Corbett’s book, as a matter of fact, I’ve also canoed the same route before the book came out, good read for anyone who hasn’t picked it up. I’m a collector of Algonquin Park books and have canoed and fished through a lot of it. Thanks though

    I have to start washing and preparing my gear and clothing, it’s still three weeks away so between now and then I still have a (deer) hunt camp work weekend and get the cottage greared for the winter close up.

  10. jeff.morrison says:

    That’s not the same Ron Corbett from the Ottawa SUN, is it??

    Outdoorsguy

  11. GPG says:

    It sure is Jeff. I believe he was with the other local daily paper at the time. A very interesting and somewhat historical story of guiding in Algonquin. It’s mainly the life story of Frank Kuiack.

    Iggy, ever since I’ve read it, I’ve wanted to fish that lake… maybe next year. How was you experience on the lake?

  12. chessy says:

    how about a piece on enforcement or lack of it ….. where are our enforcement officers… we might as well not have any . our resourses are being rapped everyday . I know it is not the officers fault but lack of them. I think its about time to stop worrying about bears and other pest its time to put money back into the enforcement branch, before we dont have anything left to hunt or fish for

  13. jeff.morrison says:

    Thanks GPG, I will have to check that out!

    For those looking for a new topic to beat to death!

    http://blogs.canoe.ca/outdoorsguy/hunting/hallowed-hunt-camp-on-the-horizon/

    Outdoorsguy

  14. Iggy says:

    was a fun canoe trip but not a lot of fish, no big deal though
    Franks nephew, his name is also Frank, is a well known colourful figure around Whitney and come to give us fishing tips every year on the May long weekend. He is known in the local rag as Frank the Master Baiter

  15. snowy egret says:

    These animal rights freaktards must think these animals are over sized kitty cats watching the DISNEY CAHNNEL all day I wonder who would happen if one of these idiot met a wild cougar face to face would they approach the animal saying HERE KITTY,KITTY,KITTY? Ignorant flatlanders

  16. SPURWING PLOVER says:

    I wonder how these cougar enthusists would react if one of of these preditors attacked them would they say NICE KITTY,NICE KITTY I guess they have had their views of nature and wildlife has been so disnefied for them Just wait until they encounter a real moutian lion and not the faked ones

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