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Rescue Residents Upset Over Killed Mountain Lion Family

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Anjali Hemphill Anjali Hemphill
Anjali Hemphill joined CBS 13 in June 2012 and she's happy to make the...
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RESCUE (CBS13) – A family of mountain lions is killed after the California Department of Fish and Game says they walked onto someone’s property and ate a man’s goat.

“They are wild animals. They can be dangerous, and if we were on the menu, there’d be a person dead everyday,” said Jason Holley, California Department of Fish and Game.

Fish and game says a mother mountain lion and her three older cubs terrorizing livestock had to be killed to protect other animals and people.

“We had other reports in area of people losing livestock, so this group had probably been hunting these type of animals for a while,” said Holley.

They say a mother mountain lion came onto the Rescue property off Deer Valley Road to kill the goat. The owner found what was left a short time later.

“This guy even had a guard donkey and it still came on the premises,” said Holley.

The owner contacted fish and game to have the feisty felines killed. The next morning a USDA warden trapped the four lions and put them down.

Now, that has some neighbors upset.

“If they could have relocated them, that would have been nice,” said one neighbor.

But, wardens say relocating large predatory animals doesn’t work because they usually will find their way back.

According to fish and game, killing livestock is enough reason to authorize a permit to have that mother mountain lion and her three offspring killed.

“This homeowner had verifiable property damage, and the law says when that occurs and they ask us for a permit, we have to write one which allows lions to be taken,” said Holley.

The decision still doesn’t sit well with nearby animal lovers, but they are also glad it wasn’t a person, hurt instead.

“If they are a danger to humans, something has to be done, and I do love animals,” said one neighbor.

Fish and Game says the owner had taken the proper steps to protect his goats, including keeping them penned up behind a fence.

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