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Nunda is near the border of southern Minnesota.


The Brookings Register

Landowner shoots mountain lion near Nunda

BY: Ryan Woodard and Vicki Schuster

Kyndal Strenge photo. This mountain lion was killed near Nunda Tuesday by Chad Strenge (right). The other individual was not identified .The 130-pound male lion was within 200 yards of a farm home.

• Lion was near home, resident considered animal a threat to family

A Moody County landowner on Tuesday morning killed a large male mountain lion on his property that he considered to be a threat, according to a South Dakota Department of Game, Fish and Parks official.

GF&P Regional Supervisor Arden Petersen said a resident of northwest Moody County shot and killed a male estimated at 130 pounds at about 9:30 a.m. Tuesday.

Although GF&P declined to reveal the name of the individual involved, a separate source indicated that the landowner is Chad Strenge, and the location of the kill was near Nunda.

The man’s dog had treed the mountain lion, according to Petersen, who works out of Sioux Falls. He said the man decided to kill the animal with a shotgun because he was concerned for the safety of himself and the dog.

Landowners in South Dakota have the right to defend their property against mountain lions that they feel are a threat to themselves or their livestock or pets. Justified shooting

“He made a decision there, and we chose, based on what we found from the evidence of the scene and the interviews, that we believe the story and understand his concerns, and there’s not going to be any charges filed against him,” Petersen said.

Petersen said the GF&P typically prefers to be called when citizens spot mountain lions on their property, but said he wouldn’t “second guess” the man’s decision to kill the animal.

Lake County Conservation Officer Brandon Gust responded to the scene and investigated the incident.

Petersen guessed that the lion probably came from the Black Hills. The lion’s carcass was in the Sioux Falls GF&P Regional Office evidence cooler as of Wednesday morning. It will eventually be transported to South Dakota State University, where a necropsy will be performed to determine more details.

Petersen said the cat “bottomed out” the GF&P’s 120-pound scale, and he estimated its weight at 130 pounds.

Petersen declined to release the man’s name or the exact location of the kill.

“My concern is that the landowner would get a number of people contacting him, and I don’t prefer to put that on him at this time,” he said. Facebook posting

However, the Facebook page of Kyndal Strenge detailed a mountain lion kill on her property on the Nunda/Ward road 5 miles west of Interstate 29. On her page, she details a lion kill by her hus- band Chad Tuesday morning. The Strenge residence described on the Facebook page is in northwest Moody County, but Petersen wouldn’t confirm whether the kill described there was the same one his department responded to.

He did say he was aware of only one mountain lion kill Tuesday in his region.

According to details on Strenge’s Facebook page, a mountain lion had made his way 30 feet up a cottonwood tree about 200 yards from the Strenge’s house.

“My husband proceeded to kill the mountain lion after he shot it out of a huge cottonwood tree, and my dog tracked it through a slough on two sides of our highway where my husband had to go into the slough and shot the lion from 5 feet away with a 12-gauge shotgun,” she said.

She said her husband’s kill was considered justified.

“The GFP officer was very nice and said these situations are a case-by-case decision,” said Kyndal. “But he felt that Chad was justified in killing the lion being it was on our farm, close to our house, and our dog was after it.”

While GF&P felt the animal may have been from the Black Hills, several lion sightings have been reported in the Sinai area in recent years.


I am surprised that the state would even bother to mention that the killer won’t be prosecuted.  It’s basically open season on cougars outside of the Black Hills because a landowner can kill one any time he deems it a threat to human safety or property.  There’s little public land in SD outside of the Black Hills, Badlands National Park and two national grasslands.


Mountain lion shot in Moody County

By ELISA SAND, Staff Reporter

A Moody County landowner was justified in shooting a mountain lion Tuesday morning.

Arden Petersen, regional supervisor for the wildlife division of Game, Fish and Parks for southeastern South Dakota said a male mountain lion was shot by a Moody County landowner Tuesday morning. Petersen said the landowner’s Jack Russell Terrier had treed the mountain lion in a nearby tree belt and he was unable to call his dog away. The mountain lion was also low in the tree and the landowner felt reaching for the dog would have endangered himself or his dog, so he shot it.

After investigating the situation, Petersen said, his office will file no charges.

“We feel the situation was justified,” he said.

The lion is now at South Dakota State University where it will be studied to determine feeding habits.

Petersen said mountain lion sightings in southeastern South Dakota are intermittent. This it the third lion to be shot in the last few years. The last one was a female shot in Miner County in 2007.

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