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Local News in Brief : Countywide : 2 Cougars Sighted in El Toro, Yorba Linda

Two mountain lions were sighted Wednesday--one in El Toro and one in a residential area of Yorba Linda--leading authorities to speculate that drought may be driving the cats down from the hills in search of water and food.

A worker for the Placentia water district spotted a cougar shortly before 9 a.m. in a dry lake bed near Lakeview and Buena Vista avenues in Yorba Linda, according to Lt. Eugene Jelbert of Orange County Animal Control. The worker attempted to track the animal from a distance before calling wildlife officials.

“He described it as a beige-colored animal a bit bigger than a golden retriever but with a tail,” Jelbert said. When Jelbert arrived at the scene a short time later, he found only pad prints in the lakebed dirt.

In the second sighting, which was reported around noon, a lion was seen near Lake Forest Drive and Trabuco Road. No sign of the animal was found, however.

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Neither lion was captured. In March, however, game wardens shot and killed a 120-pound cougar that had ventured into a residential neighborhood in Yorba Linda as children were leaving for school.


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