The Vancouver SUN, earlier this week, reported on a serious cougar attack to an 18-month old toddler in Vancouver Island’s Pacific Rim National Park.
Here is the article by Cindy E. Harnett:
An 18-month-old boy, who was pulled by family members from the claws of a cougar in Vancouver Island‘s Pacific Rim National Park Monday night, is in serious condition after being flown to B.C. Children’s Hospital in Vancouver.
“He is being monitored closely,” said hospital spokeswoman Tracy Tang.
Julien Sylvester was walking just three metres in front of his grandfather and another adult when the cougar lunged from a forested area at the edge of the beach, Parks Canada confirmed.
The cougar was momentarily daunted by Julien’s grandfather, then lunged at the boy’s four-year-old sister. The cougar did not make contact with the girl, who was unharmed, Parks Canada spokeswoman Arlene Armstrong said.
“The cougar surprised them really quickly from the forested edge,” Armstrong said. “It was a very quick encounter.”
The grandfather immediately “got the child to medical attention,” Armstrong said.
Julien was taken to nearby Tofino hospital and then airlifted to B.C. Children’s Hospital, where his mother Sarah Hagar remained by his bedside on Tuesday.
“The family is focusing all of their energy on their son’s recovery and are asking the media to please respect their privacy today and in the days ahead, so they can concentrate on their son’s health,” said Tang, in a statement.
The attack occurred at 6 p.m. Monday night at Swim Beach in the Kennedy Lake day-use area of the national park, about 16 kilometres east of the community of Ucluelet, B.C.
Four officers from the Conservation Officer Service, tracking dogs, Ucluelet RCMP, and West Coast Search and Rescue launched a full-scale search Monday night to track and trap the cougar. About 20 Parks Canada staff are also involved in tracking, co-ordinating the search and communications. The search continued Tuesday.
If found, the cat will be killed because it poses a public safety risk, according to Parks Canada.
“The family members did everything right,” said Armstrong. “There’s no indication the family is at fault.”
Family members who witnessed the brief attack acted properly by maintaining eye contact with the big cat and aggressively scaring if off, Armstrong said.
Although the latest word is the young boy is expected to make a full recovery, Doctor’s say the child did suffer brain damage from the cougar’s jaw and teeth which had pierced his skull.
Now (as expected) the Animal Rights ‘do-gooders’ are out in full force running to the animal’s defence, following Parks Canada’s decision to hunt the cougar; labelling it as a ‘serious threat’.
There are comments out there like; “The fact this cat did attack a child shows there is something wrong with it” and “A healthy, well-fed cougar would not attack a child in the company of two adults” and “It’s not the cougar’s fault for hunting for food”
You already know my thoughts, so what do you think?
Should any predator (be it a cougar, bear, wolf, coyote) which has attacked a human, be hunted and destroyed, or should it be left alone because it was only acting on its natural instincts?
Please feel free to way-in and share your opinion.