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Police advise of possible NW Bend cougar activity


(Adding video; homeowner’s comments in letter)

The partial remains of a deer, possibly killed by a cougar, were found in the driveway of an Awbrey Butte home on Sunday, police said. Two days of searching turned up a possible track and bone fragment, prompting police to advise northwest Bend residents of possible cougar activity.

Officers responded shortly after 11 a.m. Sunday to the 3500 block of Northwest McCready Drive on a report that the partial remains of a killed deer were found in a home’s driveway, Lt. Brian Beekman said.

The caller did not see what killed the deer, but officers found evidence that a deer had been killed there and dragged off by another animal some time during the previous night.

Beekman said that in the driveway, they found a scapula bone, for example, but not the deer carcass.

Officers spent several hours searching the area on Sunday but were unable to find the deer’s remains or the predator that killed it, Beekman said.

“Officers were unable to determine of the deer was killed by a cougar, coyotes or other animal(s),” the lieutenant said in a news release.

The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife was advised of what took place. ODFW responded to the scene Monday and conducted another search of the area.

During Monday’s search, a possible cougar track was found about 300 yards from the driveway where the deer was killed, Beekman said.

A partial bone fragment also was found near the scene, but Beekman said officials still could not determine if a cougar killed the deer.

The homeowners said in a note to family members they became aware of the incident when their garage door wouldn’t open, and they found a guide rail had been pulled away from the wall, meaning something hit the door “with a terrific impact” — apparently during the killing of the deer.

After police investigated at the scene for three hours, he wrote, “They warned that small children should not walk alone in the neighborhood.”

ODFW suggested anyone with questions or concerns to visit the page “Living with Wildlife — Cougars” on their website.

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