black cats

LARGE BLACK CATS IN EASTLAKE?

 

 

Update: Not wild cats, County Animal Services Deputy Director concludes

 

By Miriam Raftery

 

 

June 2016 (Eastlake)—In 2014 and 2015, East County Magazine has documented dozens of local sightings by people who claim to have seen large black wild cats prowling the region, some as large as mountain lions or jaguars, others smaller but still much larger than a housecat.  But thus far, no photos had been provided of the elusive animals.

Then on June 6, 2016,we received cell phone images taken at night by a resident in the Eastlake community of Otay Mesa in Chula Vista, due east of where some earlier sightings were reported in Jamul/Deerhorn Valley and South Spring Valley.  It’s hard to judge the size or species, but looking at items such as a vehicle, hydrant , house and a three-feet-high wall in the photos raises  a question: what was prowling yards in this suburban neighborhood?


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ARE BLACK WILDCATS PROWLING EAST COUNTY?

 

 

 

 

 

Photos (not local): Jaguarundi, black jaguar, and melanistic jaguar with spots visible

By Miriam Raftery

January 22, 2014 (San Diego’s East County)--A rash of sightings of large black wildcats have been reported in East County, most recently in Spring Valley.  While thus far no one has captured photos of the animals, the growing number of sightings from seemingly credible sources—including an East County Magazine reporter, raises some intriguing questions.

  • Are these cats escaped exotic pets, or could one or more black jaguars, believed extinct in California,  or smaller jaguarundis have found their way back into our region?
  • Both jaguars and jaguarundis are critically endangered in the U.S.  If these rare cats are regaining a toehold in our region, is anything being done to protect them from being shot by ranchers, law enforcement, or wildlife officials who may be unaware of their protected status?

Most recently, on January 5, Southwestern College language and literature professor Dan Moody told ECM that his mother, Dee Moody saw a jet-black, large cat that weighted at least 60 pounds walk across an open field behind her Spring Valley house on January 4 -- in broad daylight.


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