Shawnee man says mountain lion visited his backyard

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SHAWNEE, Okla. - A Shawnee man says he spotted a mountain lion in his backyard several times and he says he has the pictures to prove it.

Ken Kerbo's Shawnee home backs up to 160 acres of undeveloped property.

He is used to seeing wild deer and turkeys, but one animal took him by surprise.

Kerbo said, "The birds were really making horrific noises. They were just squawking like crazy. And about that time, we heard this real loud cry."

Ken snapped some pictures of the animal when he first saw it about a year ago.

He says they've spotted the same animal twice in the past three weeks.

Kerbo said, "It wasn't very big, maybe knee high to what I am. After that, this year, when we saw it, it was actually a lot bigger."

Aaron Ghaemi tracks mountain lion sightings for the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation.

Ghaemi said, "Right now, we are not tracking any known confirmed wild mountain lion in the state."

Ghaemi says there have only been 15 confirmed mountain lions since 2000.

They're rare in Oklahoma because we don't have an established population.

Ghaemi said, "Typically the mountain lions that we're having come into Oklahoma, they're transient males that are seeking new, uninhabited territories to call home."

"It followed all the way down this tree line right here. And we followed it for about 6 acres until it ducked over into the trees again and we decided to stop at that point," said Kerbo. "Last night we sat on the porch hoping to be able to see it again. It's like we had cameras ready. We're ready if it ever comes back again so that we can get some good pictures."

Biologists with the Department of Wildlife Conservation plan to speak with the Kerbos and take a close look at their pictures to see if they can make a determination if this actually is a mountain lion or not.

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