A Vancouver Island resident had a surprise when she looked out her kitchen window Thursday morning: two juvenile cougars were playing in her yard.
“I was just sitting in my kitchen, having coffee, getting my daughter breakfast, and … I just caught a glimpse out of my kitchen window. I knew exactly what it was,” said Saffina Welch, who moved to the Buckley Bay area of the Comox Valley, from Vancouver earlier this summer. “I just made sure my dog was inside, because he sometimes likes to sleep on the deck. But he was [inside] so I grabbed my phone, went into the bathroom for a better viewing spot and started shooting.
“The footage isn’t good, because I believe in watching, as opposed to videoing. But it was a pretty cool thing to experience.”
Welch said she has observed many animals in the wild, but had never seen a cougar before.
“I used to be a biologist, so I have spent a lot of time [studying] bears, wolves and other animals… so looking for a cougar, I wasn’t expecting it to be in my back yard. It’s been on my bucket list for a long time, so I’m pretty happy, because I’ve got a lot of colleagues who’ve never seen one.”
Welch figures the pair to be approximately a year old.
“They looked like siblings. They didn’t look big… a friend of mine with similar experience figures they were from last year’s litter.”
She said she contacted the BC Conservation Service to advise officials of the sighting.
“Not that I felt it was a risk… but I believe sightings like this should be reported - the good, as well as the bad.”