Runner kills mountain lion after being attacked – then drives to hospital

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A man fought off and killed a mountain lion that attacked him while he was running in northern Colorado.

The man was jogging at Horsetooth Mountain Open Space near Fort Collins when the 36kg (80lbs) lion pounced on him.

He managed to fight off the cougar, walked away from the area to his car and drove himself to hospital.

Officials said he suffered facial cuts, wrist injuries and puncture wounds to his arms, legs and back after the attack on Monday.

Wildlife officers searching the trail found the juvenile mountain lion’s body near several of the runner’s possessions.

The victim described hearing something behind him and was attacked when he turned around to investigate.

The animal lunged at the runner and bit his face and wrist before he managed to break free.

Mark Leslie, Colorado Parks and Wildlife Northeast Region Manager said: “The runner did everything he could to save his life.

“In the event of a lion attack you need to do anything in your power to fight back just as this gentleman did.”

Ty Petersburg, area wildlife manager at Colorado Parks and Wildlife, said the incident could have resulted in “very different outcome”.

He said: “Mountain lion attacks are not common in Colorado and it is unfortunate that the lion’s hunting instincts were triggered by the runner. This could have been a very different outcome.”

Fewer than 20 people have been killed by mountain lion attacks in North America over the past century.

Since 1990, Colorado has had 16 injuries following mountain lion attacks and three fatalities.

The last mountain lion attack in Colorado was reported in June 2016 in Pitkin County.

(c) Sky News 2019: Runner kills mountain lion after being attacked – then drives to hospital

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