Berlin CT Sighting 2/20/2014

I am a FedEx driver for Berlin, Ct. On Thursday, February 20, 2014 just after 1:15 PM I had just delivered a package and was getting back into my truck on the lower end of High Rd (where it intersects with the Chamberlain Hwy) when I spotted a very large cat which I believe was a mountain lion. It was about 200 feet away in the backyard of (address deleted for privacy). I watched this tan/light brown cat with a long tail (weighing maybe 150 lbs) walk about 50 ft and then stand up on its hind legs to reach up and grab/investigate a large bird feeder.

It finally dawned on me to use my smartphone to get a picture. My pic is not very good (sort of looks like a deer) as it was so far away and starting to move back behind some trees/brush. I know this was not a bobcat as I also spotted one of those while in Harwinton, Ct about 5 years ago. I immediately called the Berlin Police to report the sighting...and they told me to just stay away from it and it won't hurt me...I actually laughed at them and said I wasn't about to get any closer I just wanted them to be aware of the potential danger to kids or pets in the area. I wish I knew about this sight earlier as I probably would have gotten a lot closer to get a better pic.

Berlin Cat from distanceBerlin Cat cropped

Note from COV: We rec'd this sighting report on 2/24/2014 and visted the address with the permission of the home owner. Unfortunately the snow melt with the warmer weekend weather degraded any tracks. The home owner reports on two occasions in the past 4 years cougars were reportedly seen crossing his property.

The Fedex driver, Mr. Tom Whiffen spoke with us at length, we consider him a high quality reporter, and his description is consistent with a cougar. Unfortunately, even with enhancements to his photo it is indeterminate as to the animal in the photo. We commend Tom for reaching out to us, and sharing his photo. It is very rare we get any pnotos with sightings as they are typically very brief, and usually from moving vehicles.

We encourage anyone in the area of this sighting who may have had a similar sighting to post to our sightings report link. This area is in the vicinity of the Ragged Mountain Park, an area of previous cougar sighting reports.

Dr.  John Pettini




Posted by Dr. John Pettini

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  1. I was at my kitchen window on Friday Feb.21,2014 and I saw a mountain lion coming from my neighbors yard, traveling into our yard walking south towards our wet lands . I called the Woodbridge police dept. because there was no answer for the animal control and the on call police officer was not surprised when I told him what I saw. He stated earlier that morning a police officer spotted it on Beecher road (please note the school is on Beecher Rd). He asked what street I live on, which is Dales Drive and it is off of Beecher Road. The officer said it was nothing to be concern about and that he would notify the animal control. I since called the animal control and the officer stated that it COULD NOT BE a mountain lion and there are none in CT and it could of been a bob cat ,but he did state that he would notify the proper authority. This lion was huge and was definitely over a hundred twenty pounds. Does anyone care??? There are a lot of kids in all the towns.

    Rita S,
    Woodbridge, Ct.

  2. I just saw a mountian lion in my driveway in Durham, CT. It was a close encounter as neither one of us was expecting to see the other.

  3. A danger to kids and pets? Haha, you’ve got to be fucking kidding me. Do you know what’s the scariest creature of all times, dear Tom? It’s the human being. We’re more dangerous to others than a moutain lion will ever be–on whose habitat we’ve built our houses. They have a right to roam around. It’s their home, after all.

    We’re more aggressive and driven by our basest instincts. Mountain lions have to survive, too. They kill livestock, yes, but so do we. Our ability to reason make us a “higher” species. But that’s a joke. We’re not superior. We’re just monsters who have been killing off the mountain lions.

  4. I was driving on the Berlin turnpike northbound before jct160 & saw a dead bobcat laying against the curb. I have a pic of it. I wasn’t expecting to see that on the turnpike.

    John A.
    Berlin Ct.

  5. I’d like to hear a reasonable explanation as to why the state (DEEP) would lie to the public about the existence of cougars in CT.
    Granby, CT

    • We would too, but its happening. If there had not been media immediately nearby the cat hit on the highway in Milford, you can bet we would have never heard of it. Others have been apparently hit, and the story squelched. We had four reports of one hit in Suffield, CT. We contacted the police, and they confirmed they had several 911 calls for it. They said their animal control responded. We had several witnesses that saw the cat independently of each other. When animal control was contacted, they said there was no cat hit. DEEP said the same. But yet, we had witnesses and the police tell us there was. What is there to hide if this was a bobcat? The witnesses described a very large cat with a long tail. That report is one of several.

      • It’s not happening. But a lot of conspiracy-thinking is.
        There were photographs in the papers of the one killed three years ago in Milford.
        Cougar killed in Suffield? Show us the photos. Plenty of cell phones with cameras on them, yet not one photo showing a cougar in CT (please show us a pic of the dead cougar with the Suffield police cruiser in the background; anything to prove it, otherwise forget it, didn’t happen). Just because someone says they saw a cougar does NOT make it an accurate report.
        So again: why would the state hide the existence of cougars?

        • There were photos ONLY because someone was RIGHT THERE when it happened. Two beyond reliable witnesses saw the cat on the street in Suffield, including a local MD. He had his little children with him and didn’t stop. The other was a local resident, also on way to church with children. This was a Sunday morning. The police admitted they responded to the call, and indicated that they called animal control to handle it. Why then, does animal control deny the incident ever happened at all? By the way, the MD involved also has a Phd in wildlife biology. We have had retired state troopers tell us stories, look through the old posts. Why hide them? Not sure, but we proved it was happening in Rhode Island as well, and in Massachusetts they have “lost” past evidence as well. We even have a book written in the late 1940s by a well known bobcat tracker that ran into cougars with his dogs on several occasions, and wrote about them. Why hide it? Why did they try to hide the return of moose and bear in a similar fashion back in the 60’s? We were told a moose we spotted was an “escaped horse”, or “an unusually large deer”. Huh?? You clearly have some connection to be making those kind of statements. We only hear them from the state and their associates normally. So where are the photos that were identified by a DEEP expert in the past?

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