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Creatures, Myths & Legends

Deer carcass found after big cat sighting in Devon, England

By T.K. Randall
September 2, 2023 · Comment icon 15 comments
A black panther.
Are black panthers roaming the British countryside ? Image Credit: Pixabay / ELG21
A walker and his family recently witnessed a huge black cat wandering around the remote Dartmoor area.
Sightings of large predatory cats have persisted across the British Isles for years. While it has long been suspected that a population of these animals has been roaming the countryside, conclusive evidence of their existence in the UK has been thin on the ground.

Some of the sightings are thought to be the result of big cat owners releasing their animals into the wild after the introduction of the Dangerous Wild Animals Act in 1976, but with reports of large cats continuing well in to the 21st Century, it seems unlikely that this could explain all of them.

Now another report of a large black cat in the British countryside has surfaced - this time in Dartmoor where a number of other sightings have occurred in the past.
According to reports, Jon and his family had been enjoying a walk near the Fernworthy Reservoir on August 27th when they encountered a large black animal that looked suspiciously feline.

"It started walking around slowly then saw me, stood there and looked at me and then started casually walking away," he said. "I'm quite a calm character so I thought I was seeing things and remained calm as I had my dog and child with me and didn't want to panic them."

"We decided to walk back into the forest maybe a quarter of a mile further up and straight away my son said ‘what's that?'. There was a half-eaten deer carcass just off the path in the woods and in the path there were quite a few bones about four to six inches long with broken bones from a rib cage."

"We then had to walk through thick woodland to get back to the car and while we were walking, we heard a roar. We thought we were going mad."

Source: Devon Live | Comments (15)

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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #6 Posted by David D Stevens 11 months ago
I have lived in East Devon, near the River Otter for the best pary of 70 years, and have yet to see ether a otter or a beaver dispite being a regular walker along its banks. Yet there are plenty of good photo's and video's of both of these animals. It is down to pure luck wether or not you spot these animals. Yet I have sen a wallaby or small kangaroo, also a animal that I later identified as a wolverine. Once I saw a animal running through a field of potates that I can only discribe as looking like the Greek styilised drawing of a horse. Deer, Fox's and Badgers are all common sights in the co... [More]
Comment icon #7 Posted by George Ford 11 months ago
Hi, I agree that it's a bit odd that most photos are blurry and grainy and in most cases could just be a regular house cat, but then there is this photo:-
Comment icon #8 Posted by Still Waters 11 months ago
We have a thread about that photo.  
Comment icon #9 Posted by Saru 11 months ago
To be fair, we don't know that the deer was killed by a big cat or that the roar was from one either - the witness just assumed that these were connected to his sighting.
Comment icon #10 Posted by Essan 11 months ago
I agree that that is a good clear picture - the problem is that we don't know where or when it was tKen. How (in) convenient  
Comment icon #11 Posted by Essan 11 months ago
Comment icon #12 Posted by Hammerclaw 10 months ago
Looks like a black tabby to me. 
Comment icon #13 Posted by openozy 10 months ago
There could very well be escaped big cats in the UK but I'm yet to see a genuine pic proven to be taken where it was supposed to have been. This one looks like a large feral.
Comment icon #14 Posted by Jon the frog 10 months ago
Might even be a trash bag...
Comment icon #15 Posted by openozy 10 months ago
I don't know but nearly all the huge feral cats here in Oz are black. I don't think it's better cammo than tabby color so we can rule that out.

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