TUCSON – Three mountain lions were lethally removed by wildlife officials after feeding on human remains in Pima Canyon Trail on Monday.
According to Arizona Game and Fish Department, the lions are not suspected of killing the victim.
The lions are being preserved as potential evidence in the death investigation.
An autopsy to examine the human remains is scheduled for Thursday.
“Mountain lions are not routinely scavengers. A mountain lion eating human remains is abnormal behavior. Those that do are more likely to attack a human being in the future,” said Regional Supervisor Raul Vega of AZGFD in Tucson. “In addition, they did so 50 yards from a popular hiking trail and within sight of homes, and repeatedly showed no fear of responding officers. They were a clear and present danger to public safety.”
In a press release, wildlife officials said that they recommend that the Coronado National Forest reopens the trail, which has been closed since Tuesday.