Cougar sightings are common in North Kitsap, and there are several steps residents can take to deter the animals, game officials say.
Sgt. Ted Jackson, of the Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife says a few sightings are typically reported in the area every week, though the animals are usually just passing through, he said.
Cougars are the largest members of the cat family in North America, and typically range in weight from 100-180 pounds, depending on gender. They are most active during twilight and early morning hours, and there are roughly 2,000 of them in the state, according to Fish and Wildlife.
For those who live near cougar territory, the department recommends the following:
• Don’t leave small children unattended.
• Light all walkways after dark and avoid landscaping with plants that deer prefer to eat. Shrubs and trees around kids’ play areas should be pruned up several feet to prevent cougars from hiding behind them.
• Don’t feed wildlife, such as deer, raccoons, feral cats and other small mammals.
• Close off open spaces under structures. Areas beneath porches and decks can provide shelter for prey animals.
• Feed domesticated dogs and cats indoors, and keep them inside, especially from dusk to dawn. Keep outdoor livestock and small animals confined in secure pens.
• Use garbage cans with tight-fitting lids.
In an encounter with a cougar, the department encourages people to face the animals, speak firmly and slowly back away, while also trying to appear as large as possible. Learn more about cougars and what other tips Fish and Wildlife suggests for those living near them at wdfw.wa.gov/wlm/living/cougars.htm.
- 1 frozen 9-inch deep-dish pie crust, thawed, pierced all over with fork
- 1 1/4 cup pumpkin puree
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 3/4 cup Brown sugar
- 1/2 cup evaporated milk
- 1/2 cup eagle brand milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon allspice
- Combine pumpkin puree and spices in a mixing bowl.
- Add milk and eggs and stir carefully (be careful not to splash!) until well combined.
- Pour into the pie crust.
- Bake for 30 minutes at 400, then reduce heat to 275 and bake for 45 minutes more.
- It’s done when a toothpick comes out clean (or clean-ish) from the center of the pie.
- Allow pie to cool for at least 30 minutes.