Key Points:

  • Mountain lions run very fast, with their flexible spine allowing them to change direction and move around obstacles quickly.
  • Mountain lions avoid humans whenever possible. But, if they encounter a human, the cats have been known to stalk and even kill people as prey.
  • In the past 100 years, 125 mountain lion attacks have been documented in all of North America, with 27 being fatal.

Mountain lions are dangerous creatures that can ambush and kill their prey before the victim knows what’s happening. Although attacks by mountain lions on humans are rare, partly due to their relatively small population, they can kill a human being. That fear of harm is apparent as a mountain lion relentlessly stalks a hunter at the onset of this video.

Although it blends into the background well, the mountain lion is walking toward the cameraman. He’s breathing heavily and pointing a pistol at the large mammal. Based on the location attributed to the video, they’re in Idaho. The state of Idaho has an estimated population of 2,000 mountain lions. They’re known for hunting elk calves. This mountain lion has its eyes set on a human for some reason.  

“Get back,” the man says, breathlessly.

For some reason, he has chosen to film the cat instead of getting a better grip on his gun or properly aiming it.

Meanwhile, the big cat keeps moving forward. The camera briefly loses sight of the creature as it continues to stay low to the ground and walks behind a bush. The man keeps walking backward and the cat keeps coming. The mountain lion is done stalking, though.

The cat takes suddenly lunges forward with its forelegs outreached to take a big step. The hunter is too quick on the trigger, though. The man fires a shot from his Glock 27, making the cat back off. The mountain lion quickly recovers, but the man fires again. Both shots seem to have missed as the man is holding a camera while also firing a weapon under the effects of adrenaline.  

Suddenly, the mountain lion is not feeling so aggressive, and it simply looks at the man. The cat seems confused at how the human had made such a loud noise from such a long distance. The man stands in the field, catching his breath while the mountain lion skulks away, turning back to glance at the human before leaving once again.

puma vs Mountain lion
If you see mountain lion tracks, start talking out loud and making noise in an attempt to startle a nearby cat.

Scott E Read/Shutterstock.com

Is It Normal For Mountain Lions To Attack Humans?

Mountain lions avoid humans whenever possible. However, these creatures are known to attack if they feel threatened on their territory. But this happens only as frequently as a human is struck and killed by lightning. In this particular instance, we don’t know why the mountain lion relentlessly stalked the man or what made it give up. The cat may have reached the end of its territory. If so, the mountain lion was satisfied that the human wasn’t a threat. Otherwise, the loud noise may have scared the animal. Neither bullet hit the mountain lion.

For now, the hunter probably learned two valuable lessons. First, keep an eye out in that area for mountain lions from now on. Secondly, when your life is on the line, it’s best to put down the camera and focus on survival when a powerful animal is charging you. The next time, the mountain lion or anything else in the area might not be dissuaded by a loud bang that doesn’t cause an injury.

Up Next: Watch More Powerful Animal Attacks

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