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Warning signs posted following cougar sighting at south Kelowna park

The Regional District of the Central Okanagan has placed signs warning of cougar activity at Woodhaven Nature Conservancy Regional Park in south Kelowna. Global News

Signs warning of cougar activity have been placed at a local park in Kelowna.

The Regional District of the Central Okanagan says the signs are located at Woodhaven Nature Conservancy Regional Park following reported sightings of a cougar.

Notably, the warning signs come two weeks after city and regional district officials issued a public service announcement asking residents to be bear aware in local parks.

Read more: City of Kelowna, regional district asking area residents to be bear aware

Woodhaven Regional Park is located in south Kelowna at 4711 Raymer Road, and is 29.8 hectares in size.

If you see a cougar or bear in a regional park, contact Parks Services at 250-469-6232 and the Conservation Officer Service RAPP line at 1-877-952-7277.

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According to B.C.’s Ministry of Environment, human conflicts with cougars are extremely rare and an attack is highly unlikely. However, it pays to be prepared as cougars are unpredictable.

The ministry recommends that people should:

  • Travel in groups of two or more;
  • Make enough noise so that you don’t surprise a cougar;
  • Carry a sturdy walking stick that can be used as a weapon if necessary
  • Keep children and pets close at hand and under control.
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“If you encounter a cougar, stay calm, talk to it in a confident voice, pick up all children off the ground and never turn your back on the animal,” says the ministry.

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“Instead, back away slowly, remaining upright and do all you can to make yourself look larger, and always give a cougar an avenue of escape.”

For more information about cougars from the Ministry of Environment, click here.

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