A male cougar was found dumped on side of road in Upper Peninsula.
The controversial topic of cougars living in Michigan just got a little stranger with the discovery of a dead male cougar that the Department of Natural Resources believes was intentionally dumped.
Now the Michigan DNR is looking for the public’s help in an investigation to figure out exactly where the animal came from MLive reports. The dead big cat was found in Dickinson County Monday in Iron Mountain by a woman walking her dog.
“I think it was there within the last day or two. It certainly didn’t end up there naturally,” 1st Lt. Pete Wright of the DNR told Mlive. “It looks like it was dumped out on the side of the road, over a small hill.”
DNR officials have the carcass, which was found frozen, and are working to determine how exactly it died. As of now, it’s too early to say anything definitive about the strange find, or why it may have been mysteriously dumped.
“We should be able to figure something out once we get a better look at it,” Wright said. “All I know is they don’t end up thrown off the side of the road on their own.”
Since 2008, the Michigan DNR has confirmed 31 sightings of cougars in Michigan, with all of them taking place in the Upper Peninsula. A recent rumor of a photo of one taken in the Lower Peninsula was quickly debunked by the DNR. While the big cats were once common throughout the state, most are considered to have been killed off by the start of the 20th century.
It’s likely this newest development, even if it was dumped, will do little to quell persistent rumors of a cougar population throughout the state. For now, anyone with information on the dead animal found Monday can contact the DNR’s report-a-poacher hotline and make an anonymous tip or contact Wright directly at 906-228-6561 ext. 3028.