Reoprt from Phil Crosby
From an email sent 4 th February 2002:
I was interested to read the big cat article in today's Scotsman and thought it might be worth logging a sighting my wife and I had in 1997:
In Summer 1997 my wife and I took our dog to a forest walk close to Bellabeg in Strathdon. A few hundred yards from the start we noticed an overgrown path leading away from the main path leading to a clearing which turned out to be a small disused quarry. After spending some time looking at the old rusty equipment my wife noticed what she said was a wild cat on one of the steep slopes of the quarry about 50 yards away. She tried to point me in the direction and eventually I got sight of it. Whereas I was expecting to see an animal of the size and colour of a traditional wild cat I was surprised to see a much larger black creature walking slowing away up the slope from us. I only saw it for a few seconds but immediately after it disappeared my wife and I discussed what she saw and her thoughts were the same as mine. We both agreed it was a black cat about the size of a large dog. We mentioned the sighting to one of our friends who had lived locally for some time and he wasn't surprised as he knew of two other people who had seen a similar cat in the same area within the previous few months. We spoke to one of them (who happens to be 'the naturalist' mentioned in the Press and Journal article "
He saw a cat on two separate occasions and reckoned one of them was a puma but the second was a bigger cat (he reckoned it was a panther). He said that he watched the larger cat bound across a field and jump over a 5-bar gate with ease. He lived about quarter of a mile from where we saw our cat. We were pleased that we had no prior knowledge of these other sightings before we saw our cat as we know what we saw wasn't influenced by expectation.
Hope this helps - if you require any further details please don't hesitate to contact me either by e-mail or on tel.
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