Big Cat Sighted Near Paris

The town of Montevrain is on high alert after multiple sightings
By Elizabeth Armstrong Moore,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 14, 2014 12:30 AM CST
Big Cat Sighted Near Paris
In this April 19, 2005, file photo, a Canada lynx heads into the Rio Grande National Forest after being released near Creede, Colo.   (AP Photo/David Zalubowski, File)

A woman leaving her husband's grocery market in Montevrain just east of Paris saw what she believed to be a lynx, took a photo of what indeed appears to be a large feline, and called her husband from the confines of her car. Residents were told to stay indoors, children were picked up from school by parents instead of dropped off by bus, and a fleet of officers began to comb the countryside, replete with tranquilizer guns and a thermal detector in a helicopter above, reports the BBC. Even a wolf catcher joined the search effort with a specially trained dog, authorities said.

Multiple locals thought they'd seen the cat, reports Le Parisien, which based on its tracks appears to be a young tiger. Last night, about 100 police followed its prints into the woods near the enclave that's home to fewer than 10,000 people, reports the AP, but they paused their efforts when darkness fell. The town's mayor's office said the tiger likely didn't escape from a circus that had been in town until Saturday, while Euro Disney, which is in charge of Disneyland Paris, says it doesn't have any tigers, and a wildcat animal park 18 miles away says it's not missing any felines. (Berlin once had a wild boar problem, though some residents liked the pigs and even fed them.)

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