ZIGZAG — State wildlife officials plan to test a cougar killed Friday near Mount Hood to determine whether it is the animal that killed a 55-year-old hiker earlier this week.
U.S. Department of Agriculture officers killed a cougar that appeared at the site of the deadly attack on Diana Bober, an avid and experienced hiker, near the Hunchback Mountain Trail in the Mount Hood National Forest.
“We don’t know if this is the cougar responsible, but we do know that this cougar was at the attack site today,” Brian Wolfer, the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife watershed manager leading the effort, said in a news release issued Friday. “We are doing all we can to confirm as quickly as possible whether this is the animal responsible.”
Bober’s body was found Monday, almost two weeks after she was last heard from. She appears to be the first person known to have been killed by a cougar in the wild in Oregon and the second in the Pacific Northwest this year.
The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife said in the news release that the cougar’s body will be taken to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Forensics Laboratory in Ashland. The laboratory will analyze the evidence to determine if the cougar is the same one that killed Bober. State wildlife officials believe it will take at least three days before results are available.