Dead cougar found in Calcasieu Parish

70-pound adult had been declawed on all four feet, LDWF says

A dead cougar was found along La. Hwy. 12 west of Dequincy in Calcasieu Parish on Nov. 7, and officials with the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries are seeking the public’s help in determining the origin of the animal.

According to a press release, necropsy results indicated the 70-pound adult had been declawed on all four paws, but decomposition made the animal’s age and exact cause of death difficult to determine.

“We are not convinced it had actually been struck by a vehicle,” said Maria Davidson, large carnivore program manager with LDWF. “The cause of death is still under investigation, but it was absolutely a captive-held pet that we believe was probably placed there after it died.”

There are no personal captive cougar permits currently issued in the state because of safety concerns, so it is unlawful to possess a cougar in Louisiana except for certified zoos, the release states.

Anyone convicted of killing a cougar in the state could face civil restitution of up to $4,351 and federal citations with additional fines and penalties.

To report information related to the cougar found Nov. 7, contact LDWF’s Lake Charles office at 337-491-2580.

Anyone with any information regarding persons owning a pet cougar should call LA Operation Game Thief at 1-800-442-2511. Callers may remain anonymous and may receive a cash reward.

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Patrick Bonin is the former editor of Louisiana Sportsman magazine and