Mountain Lion In Colorado Chicken Coop Attacks Girl, Killed By Wildlife Agents

Colorado wildlife agents killed a young female mountain lion after it attacked a girl in a chicken coop near Buena Vista Wednesday. While there have been several mountain lion sightings recently in Wyoming communities, there haven’t been any attacks on people.

Mark Heinz

May 12, 20233 min read

A mountain lion is treed in a Colorado neighborhood.
A mountain lion is treed in a Colorado neighborhood. (Getty Images)

Colorado Wildlife Officials had to kill a young female mountain lion after it attacked a girl In chicken coop near Buena Vista this week.

“This lion was cornered in a chicken coop and felt the need to defend itself. Unfortunately, once a lion learns it can physically harm a human, CPW (Colorado Parks and Wildlife) is forced to euthanize that animal to protect human health and safety,” agency spokesman Joey Livingston told Cowboy State Daily.

Meanwhile, despite mountain lions showing up in several Wyoming town and cities recently, there haven’t been any reports of attacks on humans in the Cowboy State.

A Swat To The Face

The Colorado girl, 11, went to inspect the family’s chicken coop Wednesday after finding one of their chickens dead on the ground, according to reports. When she opened the door to the coop, the mountain lion — which was lurking inside — swatted her in the face.

The suffered a small puncture wound on her face and was treated and released from the hospital that day, according to reports.

State wildlife agents found and killed the mountain lion, which weighed about 30 pounds.

Young, Elderly Mountain Lions Cause The Most Trouble

People are usually attacked by mountain lions that can’t hunt well for themselves, Livingston said.

“Most lion attacks on humans occur with young/juvenile lions who have not learned to properly hunt, or older lions that have lost their ability to hunt,” he said. “This lion was the former. There are, of course, other scenarios involving young children that are outdoors by themselves.

“However, for the most, part attacks on humans are very rare even in areas with high lion to human ratios. Lions are very elusive animals that generally avoid people.”

Colorado Cats Attack People, Kill Dogs

There have been three other mountain lion attacks reported in Colorado in the past few years.

On March 20, a man suffered minor scratches when a mountain lion crept up on a couple in a hot tub in a rural subdivision near Nathrop and swatted the man in the head.

In March 2022, a man in Montezuma County suffered claw wounds to his lower leg from a mountain lion that came up on his porch.

And in Larimer County in March 2020, two men had to be treated for rabies after it was discovered that a mountain lion that attacked them, and then was killed by game agents, was infected with the deadly virus.  

And late last year, mountain lions killed 15 dogs in about a month in and around the tiny town of Nederland in rural Boulder County, Colorado.

Mark Heinz can be reached at

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Mark Heinz

Outdoors Reporter