Police and the Conservation Service are on the hunt for a cheetah that was spotted on Highway 3A near Crawford Bay Thursday afternoon.
Creston RCMP are asking residents in the area of Crawford Bay and Kootenay Bay, to be aware of the presence of the adult big cat .
They released the following info:
On Thursday December 17, 2015 at around 4:30pm, the Creston RCMP received a report of a cheetah sighting near the community of Crawford Bay, BC. The cheetah was seen wandering roadside by a motorist on Hwy 3A near Kootenay Bay. The witness was able to photograph the animal and reported the incident to the Creston RCMP. It was observed to be wearing an orange cloth collar.
The Creston RCMP immediately consulted with the British Columbia Conservation Services, both agencies have been working together since the sighting in attempts to safely locate the animal.
Authorities would also like to speak to the big cat’s custodian.
Area residents in the Crawford Bay and Kootenay Bay area, along with staff of the Crawford Bay School have been notified by the RCMP. Until the animal is located people are asked to be vigilant while outdoors, especially with their small children and animals. BC Conservation Services advises that a cheetah is typically shy and less aggressive then other members of the Felidae Pantherineae (large cat) family. Regardless of it having a collar on, it should be considered and respected as a wild animal. Public safety along with the animal’s welfare are paramount at this time. Stated Cpl Dan Moskaluk.
If anyone should observe the animal, authorities ask that it not be approached and to immediately call 911 or the Controlled Alien Species Unit of the British Columbia Conservation Service at (877)952-7277 to report the sighting.
Anyone with information on the animal and/or it’s owner are asked to contact the Controlled Alien Species Unit of the British Columbia Conservation Service at (877)952-7277 or Crimestoppers.