UPDATE: 1:20 p.m.
Idaho Fish and Game Department personnel have captured a young, male mountain lion that was spotted roaming on Idaho Falls’ west-side Friday morning.
Spokesman Gregg Losinski said officers located and darted the cat to sedate it early Friday afternoon.
Dogs led by the East Idaho Houndsmen led the search for the cat, which was found hiding in a back yard near the Idaho Falls airport.
The mountain lion has been taken to a location deep in the mountains and away from humans or livestock for release.
UPDATE: 10-13 9:15 A.M.
Idaho Fish and Game Department personnel are checking into reports that someone saw a mountain lion jump over a fence near a canal near the airport early Friday morning.
Spokesman Gregg Losinski said the report has not been confirmed, but wildlife managers are investigating. He said they are prepared to attempt to capture or sedate the animal, if necessary.
Losinski points out, however, that mountain lions “move fast and hide well.”
“They are more common than people realize,” said Losinski. “The biggest threat is probably to pets rather than people.”
Idaho Falls Police notified west-side residents early Friday that an American mountain lion was spotted near the Idaho Falls Regional Airport at around 4:30 a.m. Police began notifying regional residents around 6:30 a.m.
Residents were advised to use caution and keep their pets indoors.
There were no reports of the lion coming in contact with other animals or humans.
Idaho Fish and Game Department spokesman Gregg Losinski said it is not uncommon for mountain lions to be seen anywhere in the region. Wildlife managers have not been notified about any recent public encounters with them.
Anyone who might see a mountain lion should remain a safe distance away and not approach it.
Police request people report any sightings to dispatch at 208-529-1200 or the Upper Snake Regional Office of Idaho Fish and Game at 208-525-7290.