SAO PAULO – Brazilian firefighters rescued on Thursday a puma from the top of a tree in the southeastern state of Minas Gerais.
The animal, estimated to weigh around 60 kilos (120 lbs.), was spotted early in the morning by the owner of a small mining camp in the Barbacena district, fire Sgt. Adair Barros told EFE.
The puma was perched on a branch some 12 meters (39 ft.) off the ground, Barros said.
Following the protocol for situations involving wild animals, the fire rescue personnel contacted the Environmental Police and a veterinarian, who sedated the puma and placed nets around the tree to catch the big cat in the event of a fall.
The team was eventually able to lasso the animal when it moved to a lower branch.
The entire process of safely extracting the puma from the tree took about six hours, Barros said.
The camp owner told the firefighters that 10 of his chickens went missing in recent days and that he was alerted to the presence of the puma by his dogs, who were particularly agitated.
Barros said it was the first time his unit captured a puma, though area residents have reported previous sightings of the big cat.