WILDLIFE -- Relax and enjoy yourself if you vist Bartoo Island at Priest Lake. Rumors of a cougar roaming the island have been dispelled. Here's the report just issued by the Idaho Fish and Game Department.
On Monday, August 12, 2013, campers on Bartoo Island reported hearing and seeing what appeared to be a mountain lion to the US Forest Service (USFS). Bartoo Island, located on the Priest Lake Ranger District of the Idaho Panhandle National Forests (IPNF), is one of seven islands on Priest Lake. The island consists of USFS campgrounds and privately owned land.
To ensure public safety, personnel from the IPNF partnered with Idaho Department of Fish and Game and responded to the report. The agencies coordinated with the Priest Lake Sportsman’s Association and volunteers to search the island early on the morning of August 14. The group used hounds to search for the mountain lion, but did not find any evidence that one had been on the island.
While no mountain lion was found, visitors to Bartoo Island are reminded that proper storage of food and beverages can reduce the likelihood of unwanted visitors to their campsites. A mandatory food storage order, covering the Priest Lake Ranger District, is in effect annually from April 1 through December 31. For more information on proper food storage, members of the public are encouraged to visit the Idaho Panhandle National Forest’s food storage web site.
For more information, please contact the Priest Lake Ranger District at (208) 443-2152 or visit the Idaho Panhandle National Forests Website Idaho Panhandle National Forests - Home.