Portola Valley: Deputies see mountain lion feed on deer carcass


Of the many local reports of mountain lions sightings, this is a rare one. When the San Mateo County Sheriff's Office deputies showed up, they actually observed the mountain lion.

At about 9:15 pm Wednesday night, Sept. 2, a mountain lion was reported seen in the vicinity of the 100 block of Cervantes Road in Portola Valley, the Sheriff's Office said.

When deputies arrived, they saw the mountain lion, described as weighing about 100 pound, feeding on a deer carcass.

The lion, deputies said, "subsequently left toward a rural area."

The Sheriff's Office gives the usual precautions:

● If you see a mountain lion, do not approach it, especially one that is feeding or with offspring. Most mountain lions will try to avoid confrontation.

● Avoid hiking or jogging when mountain lions are most active – dawn, dusk, and at night.

● Keep a close watch on small children.

● If you encounter a mountain lion, do not run; instead, face the animal, make noise and try to look bigger by waving your arms; throw rocks or other objects.

● Pick up small children.

Go to for more information.

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9 people like this
Posted by Nellie Belle
a resident of Portola Valley: other
on Sep 3, 2015 at 3:48 pm

In all the 50 years I've lived in and around PV, I've had only five mountain lion sightings, none of which I was in danger from. They were here first, and are coming down into populated areas due to the drought. We just need to be vigilant with our children and small pets. Please let's not start shooting them like Palo Alto.

2 people like this
Posted by Chance
a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Sep 3, 2015 at 7:32 pm

I'd disagree with Nellie. Mountain lions are more frequently being seen in human-populated areas due to increasing numbers of them. Because a male mtn. lion's "territory" is large and vigorously defended, the younger males are then forced to try to establish new territories, which today are often urban areas. The lions have no natural predators (the mtn. lion hunting season for them was ended) -- so all of this could've been predicted. It's simple: mtn. lions get hungry and they look for prey.

8 people like this
Posted by PV Resident
a resident of Portola Valley: Central Portola Valley
on Sep 3, 2015 at 11:26 pm

The lions follow the deer, and the deer are certainly here in large numbers. I've seen lots of bucks lately as well. The deer themselves are looking for food and water. No indication that the number of lion sitings (at lease in my neighborhood) has dramatically increased. One thing for sure, a lot more cameras out there that can photograph a lion that may pass by. I say leave the lions alone, The don't seem to want to bother us, follow some common sense practices when you live in lion country and you should be fine.

Like this comment
Posted by JerryL
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 4, 2015 at 8:57 am

You might want to read, The Beast in the Garden. It concerns mountain lions in Boulder, Colorado, and the tragic consequences.

2 people like this
Posted by Thomas
a resident of Portola Valley: Westridge
on Sep 5, 2015 at 11:04 am

Have any of you actually encountered a mountain lion? I have had two sightings up close, the first in 1992 behind Searsville, the second last week in Los Trancos. They aren't out there to attack you or eat you. We aren't in any more danger than we have been, and if you'll observe we have more raccoon and o'possum sightings too as these natives search for water and food. Attacks usually come from human bumblings or people running away, which kicks in the chase instincts, just like it would with your dog. Just use common sense.

Like this comment
Posted by Water
a resident of another community
on Sep 8, 2015 at 8:11 pm

Water is a registered user.

I think concern about coyotes is currently more warranted.

Like this comment
Posted by Chelle
a resident of Portola Valley: Central Portola Valley
on Sep 9, 2015 at 12:32 pm

I'm concerned that our local mountain lions and coyotes are being poisoned with pesticides and rat bait, and are becoming sickly and diseased. Some of our local coyotes are becoming bolder in their search for food due to the drought, and look like they may have mange. Is this a valid concern that wildlife organizations should be looking into?

Like this comment
Posted by Swan Valley
a resident of another community
on Sep 10, 2015 at 11:01 am

I used to live in northern Montana; bear country. We didn't get all freaked out and call for population controls, we knew we lived in bear country and took actions and precautions to minimize encounters, while at the same time celebrating the wildness of our local lands.

Well, here on the Peninsula, we live in mtn lion country. Put your grown up pants on and enjoy our wonderful natural areas.

Like this comment
Posted by Hmmm
a resident of another community
on Sep 10, 2015 at 11:18 am

Swan Valley - it's unclear how you came to your conclusions about our collective pants, grown up or otherwise. Did you actually read the comments? None of them were fear-mongering or dramatic. As densely populated as this area has become with those unused to being in mountain lion country, we deal with the issue pretty well, overall. It's not like the deputies shot the lion or the locals went looking for it.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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