Breaking News Blog

Monday, Apr 21 2014 05:05 PM

Possible mountain lion sighting reported in Bakersfield

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    The Bakersfield Police Department is informing the community of a possible mountain lion sighting in Bakersfield. The BPD says a KGET Channel 17 staff member reported receiving this photo through social media. The person who posted the photo indicated it was taken at 9:30 a.m. April 18 at "River Run between Stockdale Hwy. and Allen Rd.," according to a BPD news release. But on Tuesday, a biologist said the animal is a bobcat.

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By THE BAKERSFIELD CALIFORNIAN

Bakersfield police warned residents Monday of a possible mountain lion sighting on Friday morning.

A citizen sent a reporter at KGET Channel 17 a photo of the lion through social media, saying she spotted the animal at 9:30 a.m. at what the citizen called the “River Run between Stockdale Highway and Allen Road,” according to a BPD news release.

Police encouraged residents to not hike, bike or jog alone. While mountain lions typically avoid people, the animals' habitat is starting to conflict with the human population as California's population grows.

The California Department of Wildlife suggests avoiding hiking or jogging at dawn, dusk and night -- when mountain lions are most active, and keeping a close eye on children.

Police urged people to not approach mountain lions. People who encounter one, authorities said, should not run -- they should pick up any small children, face the lion, make noise and try to look bigger by waving their arms and throw rocks or objects at the animal.

If attacked, fight back, police said.

Anyone with information is asked to call Bakersfield police at 327-7111.

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