After reports of a cougar, News 12 goes on the prowl

LEBANON - A Hunterdon County couple claims it saw a cougar, but state agencies aren't so sure.

Richard and Renee Perst say they've seen a number of large cats but never a cougar before. Perst said the October snowstorm prevented him from cutting his high grass, so if it was a big cat or another predator it was the perfect hiding place to run an ambush.

In 2010, residents of Manalapan in Monmouth County insisted they had spotted a mountain lion in their area. However, the U.S. fish and wildlife service has concluded that the eastern cougar is extinct.

Agencies in other states, including Michigan, have concluded that it's possible that cougar population does exist.

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