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Mountain lion cub ‘lost’, curled up in American classroom

The mountain lion cub is lost, curled up in the American classroom - Photo 1.

A mountain lion curls up in a classroom in the town of Pescadero, California, USA on June 1 – Photo: INDEPENDENT

According to Reuters news agency, the mountain lion is lying safely in an empty classroom at a high school in the town of Pescadero, about 72km south of San Francisco.

Spokesman Javier Acosta of the San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office said the incident happened before 8:30 a.m. local time (ie 10:30 p.m. local time).

“The mountain lion casually walked across the campus, entered the classroom and ducked under the desk. Then a custodian closed the door of the room, normally used for English classes, to isolate the animal inside,” he said.

School officials decided to continue classes, keeping students away from the room with the lion while authorities worked to remove it.

“They have been at the building since about 9:30 am, planning to remove the mountain lion from the classroom in a safe and humane way, and return it to its natural habitat,” Mr. Acosta said.

According to Ken Paglia, a spokesman for the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, biologists at the scene called a veterinarian to examine the lion because the animal appeared to be emaciated.

Experts guess the cub is about 6 months to 1 year old, but the sex is unknown.

If the mountain lion is malnourished or unhealthy, he said, it can be put into treatment before being released back into the wild.

According to the spokesperson, sightings of mountain lions are not uncommon in San Mateo County. Young males often wander into densely populated areas, while seeking to compete for their own territory.

The June 1 incident was nonetheless a memorable highlight for Pescadero High School students in the final week of this school year.

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