Mountain Lion Snared in Western Kerr County


Mountain lion snared in Kerr County, Texas

We’ve all heard the stories about folks seeing mountain lions, and sometimes we even hear about it in the news, but sometimes seeing is believeing. By their nature, mountain lions are extremely secretive and you pretty much have to stumble into one to be lucky enough to see it.

Such was the case April 12 on the Kramer Ranch in western Kerr County, Texas. A routine fence-line ride turned up something out-of-the-ordinary as Jim and Sharon Capeheart noticed something snared in their fence. From a distance, the tan creature appeared to be a deer hung up in a coyote snare, but as they got closer, they realized that it was actually a mountain lion. Dismounting from horseback, the couple approached the cat to inspect with their dogs.

Mountain lion snared in Kerr County, TexasMountain lion snared in Kerr County, TexasMountain lion snared in Kerr County, TexasMountain lion snared in Kerr County, Texas

“One horse, the gray, would have nothing to do with the cat,” Sharon said, but several others “nudged and checked out” the curious thing with their muzzles.

In retrospect, she recalled the horses having “acted strangely in this area” most probably due to scent left behind from the mountain lion.

The land owner generally rides the area every day, she said, checking snares, signs, and fences for holes. Having had coyote problems and a decline in whitetail fawns, the Capehearts have enlisted in a co-op program through the United States Department of Agriculture and Texas A&M of Wildlife Damage Management Service.

Although I’m sure that program is intended to target coyotes, you just never know what type of predator you’re going to catch with a snare!

20 thoughts on “Mountain Lion Snared in Western Kerr County

  1. Donna Barstow

    Yes, and this is exactly what the WDM loves to do – kill any and all animals. So true about snares – why, you could even kill your own child in one! Interesting!

  2. Jenny

    Would you rather have that big cat kill one of those children, or how about the coyote? How about how they both can irradicate deer populations and small animals as well. How about you be realistic. Sometimes things like this need to be done to keep a healthy balance, so maybe you should think about things like that before you open your mouth. I bet you wear leathers shoes! The poor cow…do you eat steak, fish, eggs, milk, wear wool sweaters? I bet you do!

  3. Donna Barstow

    Oh, I see 2 cowardly anonymous people answered here. Yawn.
    CC, do you own the air your breathe, the water you drink and every living thing on your property? What a controlling person you must be.
    Jenny, quite an assumption that every animal is out to kill you! You must have a scary life! The word is eradicate, but this cat didn’t, and I’ve never heard of them eradicating any other species. Link please, unless you made this up.

    I wear sneakers, and I eat fish, not meat. Tell me, what does this have to do with killing a mountain lion for sport or in this case, through mismanagement and stupidity?

  4. BowHuntinSOB

    Got some tracks on our property near Temple, Texas, and have had sightings of this big kitty. I will be going out this weekend to see if I can put a broadhead into her pumping station.

  5. jule

    instead of killing my mountain lion they could had fish and gang come pick it up and relocate it cuz one mountain lion comes on your proporty onther one is bownd to come around to so your just guna keep killen them and make them more exstinct soon your kids kids wont be able to see a mountain lion cuz people like this just keep killing them off god wouldnt kill you so dont kill the mountain lion cuz god made him to think about that next time you come across a mountain lion, or bob cat, or ciotie, wild dogs, just call fish and gang people they will relocate the animal

  6. Decepticon

    Hahaha. I stumbled on this by accident but the comment by BowHuntinsob was too funny so I had to comment.

  7. Mike

    BowHuntinsob, please proof read before you post. Your points go out the window when you write with such horrible grammar. For the rest, you can protect your kids without killing the mountain lion. As far as eradication of the whitetail deer population by a single mountain lion, that is is just absurd.

    Mountain lions are natural predators of deer, that is mother nature’s species control. Sometimes humans try to do to much. If the population is low just don’t issue as many hunting license for a few seasons and the deer population will rebound. Part of the cycle.

  8. jenn

    Or how about if you’re going to live in the wilderness, you share the land with those that were there first… if you want to have children and live a fear free like, maybe you ought to move to the city or deal with it.

  9. Nicole

    I think Mike was talking to Jule, not Bowhuntinsob…

    But this is interesting. I wish they told more of how the horses reacted weirdly to the scent of the cat. And, for the record, I don’t think people from the city have a right to comment on the precautions or lifestyles of those who live in more rural areas.

  10. Sara

    Wow. A lot of people have their skivvies up in a bunch. In response to CC and Jenny – if you didn’t live out in the boonies, the mountain lions and coyotes and deer would probably be living in harmony. What about nixing deer hunting season?! Oh no – that’s a way of life! The mountain lions and coyotes are the whole problem! You limit their food source – and what do you expect them to do? They have survival instincts and can behave erratically – that’s when someone’s kids may become a target. These predators have been there a long long time before you. They didn’t need fences until your ancestors came along.

  11. mark

    mountain lion populations are increasing rapidly in california and are getting more tame………..when living in the woods in california I heard that one of the other homeless drunks had befreinded a mountain lion by getting him big cans of tuna fish and a good supply of beer.Later I heard another story probably the same mountain lion because the fat three hundred pound mountain lion ( about a hundred pounds over weight ) was seen raiding the garbage bin behind kentucky fried chicken and then proceded to waddle it’s cat ass up toward the university of santa cruz probably to smoke some herb or drink some beer.they will attack children or anyone who is giving off a shit vibe but they will back off if you slam them as hard as you can with a rock or stick but don’t run because they are programed to chase if they just sit there after you hit them your not done yet pick up the biggest rock you can find and hit him point blank range until he runs away other wise they will, as one story told “chased and attacked a runner for ten miles”

  12. Erin

    Predators keep the deer population healthy by culling the sick, old and wounded. Hunters, on the other hand, take the strongest, most fertile bucks. Some in the hunting community want to eliminate predators to artificially increase the prey animal populations. This is just plain lazy and diminishes the health of the deer population. There are plenty of deer for both mountain lions and people to hunt. Share and share alike and we can maintain the natural balance of a healthy ecosystem.

    Further, predatory animals very rarely harm humans. They are afraid of us and we are a much greater threat to them than they are to us. If you are worried about your children, it might be prudent get a dog or have them walk in groups and make a lot of noise. Or hey, you could always watch them yourself! You could even move to the city and leave the country for people who aren’t afraid of everything on four (or more) legs.

  13. Brenda Kramer

    This mountain lion was killed on my father’s ranch in Mountain Home, Texas. Do I think all mountain lions need to be killed? Of course not, only those that cross our fence and attack our livestock. We will continue to protect our land and the livestock on it. As far as snares killing kids, that is probably one of dumbest things I have ever heard. Some people have no clue about everyday ranch life and should leave our way of life alone. We do not and don’t want to live in the city. We continue to see signs of more lions on the ranch and given the chance, we will get them too.

  14. Jacy

    Oh for goodness sake! I am SICK TO DEATH of the country vs. city argument! Not everyone who is offended by the needless death of wild animals lives in the freaking city! I live on a ranch and I understand the “way of life,” etc., and yet I was deeply offended by the cavalier tone of this article. Do you proud cougar killing ranchers even know what the stats are on for mountain lion kills? Forget killing people – hunters kill more people accidentally than cougars do. FAR more. (About 100 people are killed per year in hunting accidents, while there have only been 23 people killed by cougars in the last 100 years). I’ll use sheep as an example because cougars kill more sheep than any other livestock animal. In Texas, cougars kill about 500 sheep per year out of a population of around 2 mill – that’s .02 percent. Total predation loses in Texas per year, however, are around 23,000. Point is, yes, predation is a problem – but cougar predation is not a problem. It’s barely even a footnote to a problem. Getting upset about the single sheep you lost to a cougar attack is ridiculous. Try worrying about the hundreds you lost due to starvation and other preventable diseases.

    But back to the offensive, cavalier tone of this article. I have – none of us have – any real idea what the ranchers who found the cougar really felt. But the person who wrote the article was positively glee-ful that a cougar had been killed in the trap. By golly, you can trap any predator in a coyote trap – how cool is that! Instead of mourning the loss of a beautiful and, as the writer noted, a “solitary and secretive” animal that most people haven’t even ever seen in the wild (much less been affected by in any way whatsoever, rancher or not), the writer seemed to suggest that the death of any and “every” predator is a victory for mankind. That is just ignorant and, frankly, disturbing. The so-called “country way of life” you all are defending against the presumed “ignorant city folk” is just as ignorant in it’s own way as you accuse others of being. Get over yourselves!

    Closing your eyes and putting your fingers in your ears doesn’t change the fact that the environment, and yes, including predators, needs as much protection and care as your fences and livestock. I’m certainly not condemning these ranchers for the accidental death of a single cougar in an attempt to secure their livestock and livelihood from more serious problems and predators. What I have a problem with – and what all of you should have a problem with – is the sense of glee and pleasure you seem to feel at the death of an animal.

    Death – any death, whether necessary or not – should make you feel sad, not happy. And those of us who do feel upset are not cowards or idiots or ignorant or even necessarily city-folk – we are the best of mankind, our sympathy helps us to make the world a better place, for ranchers and city-folk alike. One only need consider Temple Grandin’s work to understand the ways in which sympathy can protect and enhance ranching while yet protecting and enhancing the lives of the animals we depend upon for our “way of life.”

  15. Adele Post author

    Jacy, over 30,000 people die in the U.S. each year in automobile accidents. I think that is a cause worth get worked up and writing about—not about the handful of mountain lions that get snared or shot each year by hunters.

    And as far as 100 people being killed by hunters each year. The fact is, those 100 people are hunters, most dying from self-inflicted wounds/injuries. You may dislike hunters, but have some compassion for people. A fall from a tree, a heart attack or any other number of things that can wrong do occasionally does.

  16. TJ

    This whole argument is ridiculous to the point of mentioning. City life is not safe and care free. It is just a different set of concerns they face on a day to day basis. Bowhuntinsob, if you are not embarrassed of yourself and your lack of grammar, you should be, then I will be embarrassed for you.

    The only two people who didn’t put a black mark on their credibility are Jule, who didn’t even comment on the article, and Jacy. Pxiong, you came close but fell short when you commented on people should be saddened by death, not all death is sad, and when you introduced clearly personal emphasis on some of your points. Do you mourn or feel sad when rapists, murders, and other people strip the rights of other human beings? I know I don’t feel sad when they get killed. Actually, I am saddened by the fact that they are allowed to remain living.

    You did however make a very good point that this article does not put into perspective how the ranch owners felt. They have every right to protect their land and their livestock as they see fit. That doesn’t mean that they didn’t feel bad for the animal that got caught in their trap. Perhaps they were sad that the animal was killed but also happy that their livestock didn’t end up as dinner.
    I do not blame the homeowners for putting up traps. They didn’t go out into the wilderness and start shooting every predator they saw. Instead, they put up a boundary to keep unwanted visitors out.

    I would comment on how ridiculous the better portion of you sound arguing city folk versus country living but I am sure that I would just be scoffed at and some sort of excuse would be made for why I have no idea what I am talking about and it would fall on deaf and it Bowhuntinsob’s case, unlearned ears.

  17. Macal

    I think people need to be more human..
    Mankind spreads across the globe and anyone or anything that stands in their way is doomed to be killed or ‘eradicated’ as one person says..

    Well..if God didn’t want those animals to exist he would not have made them…the ONLY species on this earth that ever ‘eradicated’ aother species is mankind..remember that with ur wise remarks..

    God will judge you one day, and he’ll not look kindly on the wise crackers..
    You may not believe he exists, but that doesn’t matter..ur like the people that thought the earth was flat..

    In any case, I hope most people seeing this will think “poor kitty” rather than “mofo animal ruining everything..”

    They ahve a right to their space, much like people do. If you think otherwise, I hope God will at some time feel the same about you, and you’ll be as helpless as that poor cat..
    And I hope you remember the wise cracks as you made here.

    I DO NOT LIKE PEOPLE WHO THINK THEY ARE ABOVE THE ANIMALS WHEN THEY ARE NOT !!
    (To be kings of the earth means governing wisely, not setting up shop in or near a wildlife reserve, or an area filled with so-called predators..in comparison to us, mankind, they are helpless bystanders..)

    Now, if you feel like making wise cracks against someone who can defend himself, target here plz.. Macal007@Hotmail.com

  18. J Bradford L

    I like your post Jacy.

    I’m a 31 yr old, fifth generation rancher and have heard a few screams, but never have I actually seen a panther. I would love to see one in person while on foot out In the brush – with or without a gun on me…I wouldn’t even consider shooting it. The adrenalin rush I would experience while in the presence of this animal would be the memory of a life time. I wouldn’t even mind fighting it because I would crush it’s head with a rock if it got too close. “Fly o eagle fly, you better run little cottontail run.”

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