Mountain lion sighted………Neighborhood Alert!!

bird dogger

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A mountain lion was sighted last week by a motorist in my immediate area. They were driving out of town to get a good look at the Neowise comet when this lion posed for their pic. They sent the pic to the State Game & Fish Dept., the local newspaper’s outdoors expert, and our township supervisor. All agreed it was a mountain lion.

Now……the "REST" of the story: My neighbor (who was the computer programmer for a local manufacturing company before retiring) and I were talking about metal art of all kinds. I told him I had always wanted to cut out a lion to mount up in a tree where it could easily be seen. After returning from a short vacation, there stood this metal lion cutout in our yard. The neighbor had drawn up the file and had it laser cut at his former workplace. Unable to find a good drawing of a sleeping treed lion to work from, the life-sized walking lion was created. We laughed about the possibilities this could create.

I decided to paint it up as life-like as I could and would move it around, placing it out at dusk to see if it would help keep the deer out of our sweet corn patch. My high school art class grades were poor at best, but this didn’t turn out too bad. Spikes were welded to the feet allow sticking it onto the ground. Both sides were painted identical with an airbrush. At dusk and later it really appears to be real, especially with the red reflector tape used for the eyes. Here's the before and after painting pics.
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But wait! There's more.....
 

bird dogger

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Timing is everything! The first night on duty, the lion caught the eyes of the above couple late at night. I was on my way out to retrieve the lion and spotted the same car. After they left the lion was removed. Twenty minutes later the couple was returning home and the lion was now gone! In their eyes it had to be real. Their pic was sent to different experts and their story printed in the newspaper online version. We don’t get the paper so were unaware of their story or the newspaper article.

The next day our township supervisor called me (from the location’s description he figured it had to be at our place) and asked me if I had seen this lion or its tracks. The couple who spotted it had also sent him a pic. He said we should be careful and on the lookout. By this time, I couldn’t help but laugh and had to fess up and tell him the truth. We both had a good chuckle and thought that was the end of it.

However, the newspaper printed that couple’s story and alerted everyone to be on the lookout, more or less, as there was a confirmed mountain lion sighting and the pic was also confirmed by the experts at the Game and Fish Dept.!

Still unaware of the newspaper article, my neighbor called and said we made the paper with an article on the lion! The first article was pretty funny (knowing the real story behind it) but was soon replaced with a second story. A retraction, stating the lion was actually a clever decoy used to scare deer but had also fooled everybody else. (I’m guessing the township supervisor either alerted the paper or the couple of the truth behind the “decoy …. thus, the 2nd story or retraction.) I didn’t think to copy/paste the first article right away and within minutes it was gone. Only the 2nd retraction article was left online.

Here's that retraction article with the original pic:

Uffda: 'Mountain lion' spotted in a ditch west of Interstate 29 was a decoy set to scare deer, apparently

If it’s just as effective at fooling deer, the landowner definitely is on to something.

Written By: Brad Dokken | Jul 23rd 2020 - 3pm.
Lion Sighted.jpg


This "mountain lion" spotted late Wednesday night on 32nd Avenue west of Interstate 29 actually is a decoy. Make that an amazingly realistic-looking decoy.

Remember the story about the mountain lion that really wasn’t a mountain lion but instead was a decoy set along the road to scare deer?

Neither did we. Until today.

A story appeared briefly this afternoon on the Herald website about a mountain lion sighted Wednesday night on 32nd Avenue a couple of miles west of Interstate 29. The big cat, we learned later from the person who took the photo, actually was a decoy that had been set out by the landowner to keep deer away from his corn field.

The decoy fooled the driver who took the photo, it fooled Herald outdoors editor Brad Dokken who saw the photo and it fooled two experts from the North Dakota Game and Fish Department who also saw the photo.

If it’s just as effective at fooling deer, the landowner definitely is on to something.
 

bird dogger

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I sure wish I could procure a copy of the first article!! Now I think cars are driving out just to have a look at this mountain lion! Too funny! A couple have even driven into our yard and asked to take a pic with it…….”Of course, you can!” Here’s a few more pics of it in various places, some at dusk and later.

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Regarding the effectiveness in deterring the deer from our sweet corn patch: I really can’t say. I haven’t seen any deer around since putting it out. So, I’m not sure if they’re scared of it or not! But we see a lot of brake lights from cars driving by at night or stopping for a look. Maybe that’s where its true effectiveness comes from? No bullet holes in it yet. Fingers crossed!

Gotta go. Time to move "Leo" to his new post for the evening!! :)

david
 
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Talkstogoats

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I sure wish I could procure a copy of the first article!! Now I think cars are driving out just to have a look at this mountain lion! Too funny! A couple have even driven into our yard and asked to take a pic with it…….”Of course, you can!” Here’s a few more pics of it in various places, some at dusk and later.

View attachment 46696 View attachment 46697 View attachment 46698


Regarding the effectiveness in deterring the deer from our sweet corn patch: I really can’t say. I haven’t seen any deer around since putting it out. So, I’m not sure if they’re scared of it or not! But we see a lot of brake lights from cars driving by at night or stopping for a look. Maybe that’s where its true effectiveness comes from? No bullet holes in it yet. Fingers crossed!

Gotta go. Time to move "Leo" to his new post for the evening!! :)

david
Next year you'll need to get your neighbor to make you a tall Bigfoot cutout....
You can put a leash on the cat and have sasquatch walking him.
:giggle:
 
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bird dogger

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Ha! Trouble maker.
Yup!! :ROFLMAO:

That's a funny story!
It's been fun. If I can get my hands on the original article I'll add it to this thread. That one had me laughing all night.

Next year you'll need to get your neighbor to make you a tall Bigfoot cutout....
You can put a leash on the cat and have sasquatch walking him.
:giggle:
Believe it or not, he's already playing with designs for that for himself for later on. But he's thinking a full sheet of steel for a life size Bigfoot would weigh a considerable amount and pose a problem for getting it to stand up and remain standing in windy conditions. LOL But we shall see......

Thanks all, for the comments!! I was hoping someone would get a laugh out of the story!
david
 

bird dogger

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This morning I cruised the field up and down in a number of rows looking for damage from deer or other pests. I couldn't find a single sign of any damage. Unreal! When the young cobs are forming and filling out at this stage the cobs are like a chef's salad to deer. They'll walk down the rows and just bite the tops off of the nicest cobs they can find. At the worst, those cobs haven't fully pollinated and thus won't develop all the kernels on the cob. It also opens the cob up to all the bugs, etc. At the best, those cobs are blemished and just won't sell for anything but a huge discount. It's amazing how much damage the deer will do. Same for racoons and even the fox/gray squirrels. On two to three acres of sweet corn that can possibly add up to thousands of dollars if left unchecked.

Apparently this lion, in addition to the traffic slowing down to look, is doing a pretty good job of keeping the pests out of the field. It needs to keep them fooled for another week or so until the corn is ready for picking. I should have thought of this when we first started raising sweet corn!! :LOL: Maybe a circular track around the field with the lion patrolling at a walking pace for next year??
david
 

RCW

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David - I've gotten a real kick out of this! Your decoy looks great.

I went TOTALLY WILD years ago and hung a maple sap bucket on near-dead Butternut tree. :p

Left it there for a couple years straight....but the newspaper never picked up on it....:oops: :unsure:

Of course, poking some fun at myself, but your antics really did give me a chuckle! Thanks!
 

skeets

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That is a way cool story. I heard tell of a fellow who's wife had a very nice display around a fountain in the front yard not far off the road. And she bought a couple of the goose decoys and a deer decoy and placed then around her garden where the fountain was. They were awoken one night by shots very close to the house. Next morning there were several holes in the deer decoy. I figure there was someone at the range next day figuring out why the deer didnt fall over
 

bird dogger

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David - I've gotten a real kick out of this! Your decoy looks great.
I went TOTALLY WILD years ago and hung a maple sap bucket on near-dead Butternut tree. :p
Left it there for a couple years straight....but the newspaper never picked up on it....:oops: :unsure:
Of course, poking some fun at myself, but your antics really did give me a chuckle! Thanks!
Sweet Buttermilk from a Butternut tree.....the newspaper must've thought that was pretty logical! LOL

That is a way cool story. I heard tell of a fellow who's wife had a very nice display around a fountain in the front yard not far off the road. And she bought a couple of the goose decoys and a deer decoy and placed then around her garden where the fountain was. They were awoken one night by shots very close to the house. Next morning there were several holes in the deer decoy. I figure there was someone at the range next day figuring out why the deer didnt fall over
I wouldn't be surprised to find bullet holes in the lion at some point. But it's a well traveled road only two miles from town. But these days that may not mean much.

Reminds me about a lady that put out one of those cows for decoration. Poor ole neighbor was see out trying to herd the cow away from the road.
We'll probably all get to that point sooner or later. :) Hopefully it'll be much later!
 

Daren Todd

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Residents of Central Vermont will recognize my reference for this story.

Entering Shelburne Vermont on route 7, on the west side of the road there was an old farm. There were two silhouettes. One of a moose, and one of a Buffalo.

Moat locals driving through the area would have fun with friends and relatives from out of state that would notice one or both of the silhouettes. 🤣😂🤣😂🤣

My uncle came to visit from Ohio with his new girlfriend. Well she ran up to Burlington with my aunt to go shopping. When they got back, my uncles girlfriend was ecstatic that she saw a moose on the trip.

She got a little miffed when we informed her that it was actually a sillouette and my aunt had let her go on for hours about it. 😁😁😁😁😁😁
 
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