SAN MATEO COUNTY (BCN) — A mountain lion has been spotted for two consecutive mornings on a ridge near Pescadero Elementary School, the San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office said Friday.

The big cat was seen at about 8:15 a.m. Friday, as well as on Thursday, on a ridge near the back of the school, which is located at 620 North St. in unincorporated Pescadero.

Sheriff’s deputies will monitor the area – which is already part of the regular patrol beat – closely in the mornings to make sure people are safe, a dispatcher said.

“It’s a very rural area out there,” the dispatcher said. “The animals were there before we were.”

Friday’s sighting was reported by a third party, not someone from the school, the dispatcher said.

To stay safe when coexisting with mountain lions, the sheriff’s office suggests people keep a close eye on small children and avoid walking or hiking during the times when the animals are most active, which is at
dawn, dusk, and night.

If residents cross paths with a cougar, they should pick up children immediately and not approach the animal, especially if it is feeding or with its young, the sheriff’s office said.

People who come in contact with the animals should not run, but instead face the cat, make noise, try to look bigger than they are by waving their arms, and throw rocks or other objects at it. Mountain lions will
usually try to avoid confrontation, the sheriff’s office said.

For more information about mountain lions, visit www.keepmewild.org.

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