People say they are sure what they saw

On their way to Tractor Supply on a recent weekend around 1:30 p.m., Pamela Eppinger and Jim Coldiron saw a surprising sight. 

“We were driving down through Brandywine along the river, coming around a curve, and I look into the woods and I see a cat about the size of a golden retriever, a little larger,” Coldiron said. “It looked like it was prowling for food.” 

Eppinger heard him gasp and described seeing a big fawn-colored cat with a black tip on its tail, she said.  

“I’m an outdoorsman. I take people hunting. I know what I saw,” said Coldiron, originally from North Carolina. “It didn’t care about traffic.” 

Coldiron said he thought he heard a cougar scream a couple months ago while walking into his Pennsylvania home but didn’t see anything.  

“If you’ve heard it, you can never forget it,” he said of the animal’s roar.  

A Western cougar, a species that is similar to the Eastern cougar. Federal officials believe the Eastern cougar is extinct and are recommending it be removed from the Endangered Species List.

Eppinger said she had a friend who told her she saw paw prints under her window, suspected to be those of a cougar, in Landenberg, Pennsylvania, several years ago. 

Having grown up in an area with cougars and familiar with their nature, Coldiron recommends people throw their arms out like a jumping jack and scream if they’re ever too close to one. Having a safety whistle can also help disorient the animal and cause it to flee.  

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