Iowa Officials Say A ‘Possible’ Mountain Lion Was A Much Smaller Cat

Iowa officials who initially reported a “possible mountain lion” sighting in Des Moines have since backed their paws off the claim, according to KCCI-TV.

Des Moines Police alerted community members of a mountain lion sighting on the city’s east side on Thursday.

The department shared a clip of the alleged “mountain lion” on Facebook that depicted an animal swaying its tail from left to right as it roamed through grass.

The department confirmed that it, along with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, were investigating the report and warned residents to not approach the animal and to call 911 if they spot it.

“DNR confirmed to DMPD that this is a mountain lion. It does appear to be young/small. Sharing for awareness,” the police department wrote in a Facebook comment on Thursday.

Des Moines Police and the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, however, later corrected themselves when they said the animal in question was a cat.

You can watch the video of the cat below.

Some Facebook users poked fun at the department’s post, with one user commenting with a picture of a teddy bear and claiming it was a bear spotted in a yard.

“Initially, we did think it may be a mountain lion, at least enough so that it would be good to notify the public,” Vince Evelsizer, Furbearer and Wetland Biologist of the Iowa DNR, told Iowa news station KCCI-TV.

Evelsizer – who apologized on the department’s behalf – told the news station that the clip of the cat appeared to be small and grainy.

Des Moines Police, who shared that the “debate is over,” thanked the Iowa Department of Natural Resources in an updated Facebook post.

“Thank you to Iowa DNR for always moving in the direction of community awareness and safety,” the police department wrote.

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