Massive Cougar Released From Trap By Conservation Officer In Utah

A cougar hisses as its front paw is stuck in a trap

(Picture Credit: YouTube – MrCordoniz)

If you’re ready for an adrenaline rush, you probably won’t be disappointed by a video of a Division of Wildlife Resources (DWR) conservation officer releasing a huge mountain lion from a hunter’s trap in the Pine Valley Mountains of Utah. Officer Mark Ekins was called by a local trapper who found a mountain lion in his trap set for smaller predators like bobcats or coyotes. 

Ekins approaches the mountain lion with a catch pole

(Picture Credit: YouTube – MrCordoniz)

Ekins and the trapper worked together with catch poles to pin the cougar to the ground and stretch it out so that Ekins could safely get to the trap, all while dodging the claws and jaws of one of the biggest cats he’s ever had to release in his career. He managed to get the cat free, and after resting for a few moments, the mountain lion ran off, eventually shaking loose the catch pole around its neck.

A catch pole lies in the snow next to paw prints

(Picture Credit: YouTube – MrCordoniz)

While trappers are an important part of controlling the smaller predator population in the area, it is illegal to trap a mountain lion, and trappers are required to report it within 48 hours. They are encouraged to get help from the DWR rather than risk harming the animal. Ekins normally uses tranquilizers, but they are sometimes unavailable when he is called to remote areas. Luckily, his experience and respect for the danger he was in kept him sharp and allowed him to help get the cougar free. Big cats are an important part of the ecosystem, and it’s great that they have someone like Ekins to look out for them.

Were you nervous for Ekins while watching the video? Did your heart skip a beat? Let us know in the comments below!

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  • Kay Weir

    So glad they were able to free the cat. The speed at which he or she ran off indicates it wasn’t hurt badly. I think traps like this one are unnecessary these days.

    • RE Almanace

      You don’ know that – adrenaline can make any trapped and then freed animal run for its life — even if a paw is dangling.

      • Kay Weir

        So you prefer the animal remains trapped? Then what? Starvation? Attack from other animals? Think things through.