Cougar sighting reported in Illinois park

Raquel Erhard – Fourth Estate Cooperative Contributor

Highland Park, IL, United States (4E) – Highland Park officials in Illinois are asking residents to be on alert after last Sunday’s cougar sighting.

According to a press release, a resident saw “a large, tan, feline-type animal similar in stature to a cougar” last Sunday, heading west in Old Elm Park in the Highlands neighborhood near Half Day Road.

Police searched the area after being informed of the incident Wednesday but they found no traces of evidence of a cougar.

Last September, another possible cougar sighting was reported in Highland Park while other sightings were recorded in Glencoe and Winnetka since late-summer.

The Department of Natural Resources claimed there are no stable cougar populations in Illinois, but the creature can sporadically cross the region from South Dakota.

DNR said these animals usually avoid populated areas and advised people to use bright lights and loud noise to scare them away.

Residents are urged to be careful, and to keep children and pets supervised when outdoors.

Cougar sightings can be reported to the Highland Park Police Department at 847-432-7730.

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