Cougar tracking tool up and running for Ashlanders

ASHLAND, Ore. – In the wake of numerous cougar encounters in the City of Ashland, officials put together a mapping tool to keep track of the sightings.

The Ashland Police Department said it understands citizen concerns about cougars in populated areas and will be adding more patrols as-needed. At the same time, the department is releasing a map of cougar sightings on the city and police website. Now, that map is available to the public.

The department says the map will be citizen-driven allowing for constant updates to give people an idea about the big cats’ movements. The tool is for non-emergency situations only.

“We want to provide as timely information as possible about where the cats have been seen and we’re going to try to make it not just cats but even bears and even if deer carcasses that are attributable to cats,” said Chief Tighe O’Meara.

MPD said all wildlife encounters reported in the last two weeks have been entered. “If you have additional entries please click the ‘add’ button, lower right corner and provide as much detail as possible,” police wrote.

You can use the tool at the following address: https://gis.ashland.or.us/cougar/

Ashland Police are working closely with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife to track the whereabouts of local cougars. If you see a big cat – do not run, make yourself appear large and yell to try and frighten the animal away.

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