A 6 year-old girl suffered only minor injuries from which she is recovering from after what is suspected to be a mountain lion attacked her at a park in California. State wildlife experts are currently searching for the animal in question.
A group of patrons including the victim and her parents along with a few other adults and children were hiking on a Rancho San Antonio County Park trail in Santa Clara County. As the animal attacked one adult punched the animal in the ribs—believed to weigh about 160 lbs. The rest of the group helped scare it away by making loud noises.
A park ranger was able to quickly provide the child with first aid.
The attack happened just two miles from the main parking lot. Park officials stated that this was unusual as these lions are a rare encounter in the area. The lions live throughout the Santa Cruz Mountain region and are generally not a threat to people.
The California Department of Fish and Wildlife reported that since 1986 there have only been 17 reported mountain lion attacks against humans in the entire state. The park is currently closed while the Department of Fish and Wildlife look for the animal. Once found, official will determine what to do next.
Not long ago the first mountain lion was killed in California under the state’s new “3 strike law” which states a mountain lion can be killed by a property owner after it has killed or injured livestock or pets.
The Department of Fish and Wildlife reminded hikers that if they see a lion to stay calm. To make themselves large and loud and slow back away. Never turn and run, officials stated.