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Suspected cougar prints spotted at golf course in Eugene

Laurelwood Golf Course posted a photo of the tracks to their Facebook page.

Posted: Jul 30, 2018 10:19 AM
Updated: Jul 30, 2018 6:53 PM

EUGENE, Ore. -- Suspected cougar tracks found in a sand trap at the Laurelwood Golf Course have the Eugene Police Department and the manager of the golf course asking the public to be mindful of their surroundings.

Manager Nick Sams said the groundskeeper discovered the tracks in the sand trap near the fourth green Sunday morning.

"We came out, and we assumed it was just another dog playing in the bunkers until we saw the paw prints which were larger than a dog’s," Sams said.

Sams said as soon as they found the tracks, they called the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife. Evidence of the cougar hasn't been spotted since, and Sams hopes it's moved on.

He's asking golfers and people who walk their dogs early in the morning and at night to keep their eyes open. Sams is also asking golfers to leave behind any balls that end up in the woods near holes five and six to be safe.

"It's kind of surprising to see them in this neighborhood," golfer Paul Higgins said. "They've been here longer than we have, so who knows what they are going to do. Maybe the heat brought them out.”

Bob Helm lives off 30th Avenue not far from the sand trap where the tracks were found. He said he hopes the cougar doesn't show up again, so police won't be forced to shoot it like the one in Springfield last week. That cougar was shot and killed after police said it got into a fenced yard where children were playing.

"I hope they save it, or it moves," Helm said. "I'm sure with patience they can do that."

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