Last Friday a Spanish woman was attacked by a mountain lion in the Mesa de Anguila area of Big Bend National Park. The park remained closed on Monday as patrols looked for the animal.
Andrea Pinero Cebrian, a visitor from Spain, sustained only minor injuries in the attack. The park’s chief of interpretation, David Elkowitz, said it was unclear whether Cebrian's scratches and scrapes were from the animal or sustained when Cebrian fell while trying to run away.
Cebrian was hiking with two friends in the remote Mesa de Anguila area when they saw the mountain lion and threw rocks rocks to scare it away. A little while later, the lion appeared again and the hikers ran away down the trail.
This was the second mountain lion attack on a park visitor in 2012. The first was a young boy in February. Park officials are unsure whether the lions attacked because they were curious or because they saw the hikers as prey.
Prior to these incidents, the last reported attack was in May 2003. About two dozen mountain lions live with Big Bend National Park’s borders.