HUNTER KILLS THIRD COUGAR
January 30, 2001 11:00 pm

Another cougar has been hunted down and killed after it attacked a goat on the outskirts of Brookings-Harbor on Friday.

The attack came one week after another cougar attacked a dog off Winchuck River Road. The dog survived its severe injuries.

The goat was killed by a female cougar on the Rainbow Rock property of its owners, Gene and Shirley Wood.

Cricket Peyton, of Wildlife Services, was called by the Woods to track down the suspect cougar. Peyton had tracked down and killed two male cougars in the Winchuck River area following the attack on the dog.

Peyton and his dogs worked all night before finding and killing the cougar early Saturday. The female weighed approximately 120 pounds, much smaller than the 160-pound animal that attacked the dog.

Wood said this is the sixth goat lost to cougars in the past year. His 250-acre property is fenced with barbed wire and electrified.

The fences have not deterred the cougars, he said.

Wood and his wife raise show horses, valued between $50,000 and $75,000, as well as goats and buffalo on their ranch.

One of the Woods horses suffered a broken pelvis when frightened by a cougar, he said.

When Wood discovered the dead goat and the cougar in a cubby hole near a road on his property Friday morning, he was astounded at the agility of the cougar. When he stopped his truck to observe the cougar, it jumped the fence and bounded over the hood of his truck. He said it was frightening.

Peyton and his dogs began the hunt about 7:30 p.m. Friday and worked until about 4:30 a.m. Saturday before finding and destroying the cougar.

There are three of us in the state, paid by the government, Peyton said about his job.

Were a first response team to protect livestock and human life anyplace in the state. Whoever needs us, thats where we go.

Peytons two dogs, specially bred to track bear and cougar, are also paid by the government, he said.

The dogs look small and seem too friendly to take on animals that large and fierce. He said the dogs are worth $10,000 each.

Peyton pointed to one and said, Skeeter, here, had 130 stitches and a broken jaw from an encounter with a bear.

Peyton said cougars will cover a 200-mile range and eat house cats, dogs, chickens, goats and other small animals.

Wood said, There are a lot of chickens, cats and dogs missing in the neighborhood.

Both the Woods and Peyton expressed concern for the safety of the many children living and playing in the Rainbow Rock Road area.