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Search Underway For Aggressive Mountain Lion In Belmont Neighborhood

BELMONT (CBS SF) -- Police and game wardens searched a Belmont neighborhood early Wednesday for an aggressive mountain that has killed another mountain lion in the area.

Belmont police said the mountain lion had seen in the 2500 block of Hastings around 2:00 a.m. just east of the Upper Creek and just west of Carlmont High School. Local residents were urged to use extreme caution.

Over the last several months, mountain lion sightings have been on the rise across the Bay Area.

On Jan. 11th, a Daly City woman face-to-face with a cougar in her backyard. Laurie Golub said her dogs were barking at a tree in the rear of her Daly City home, which she thought was just another raccoon or cat.

"I noticed this big tail hanging down and I was like, 'Oh, my God what is that,'" said Golub. "I looked right up and it was looking right down at me, the mountain lion. It was very scary. I screamed a couple things I won't repeat, and I ran back inside."

At least a half dozen residents in San Carlos and Redwood City have shared surveillance camera footage of mountain lions lurking near their homes at all hours of the day. One resident warned neighbors after his camera recorded a mountain lion that had returned two days after killing a deer on a front yard not too far away.

Jim Williamson said his 79-year-old father's surveillance cameras have recorded a mountain lion at least a couple of times outside his home in San Carlos over the last year.

He said he's not surprised at the repeated sightings of the powerful animal.

"People just need to be careful," Williamson said. "We're just so close to the edge of the hills. We like to go for walks, but when it gets so dark at this time of year, early, we're always looking."

More than half of the state is mountain lion territory, and it's not too unusual to see them popping up in unexpected places, according to officials from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife.

The species typically migrates during the dry season in search of ample food and water supplies, but they might be traveling further than usual as drought conditions are on the rise and deer populations are declining, department spokesperson Ken Paglia said.

"Be aware that we do share the state with other wildlife, like mountain lions or bears, they are around," Paglia said. "Even though they potentially can be dangerous, they're usually in the city because they're looking for food resources and they're not there to hurt us."

Despite the recent sightings being attacked by a mountain lion is a rare occurrence.

"We want to make sure the public is safe, but we also want the animal to be able to live out his life in its own habitat. That's probably the best solution," Paglia said.

Installing motion center lights around the property, keeping pets indoors at night and adequately storing feed supplies are some of the ways residents can avoid encounters with mountain lions. More tips and tricks from the Mountain Lion Foundation can be found at

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