The Bayview Beast: Southold, Long Island.

On October 17th 2008 at 9:00 AM the Bayview Beast was spotted strolling across a lawn and into the woods in a neighborhood in Southhold, Long Island.  A resident who goes by the name of “John” (he wished to withhold his last name) is quoted saying “I pulled up into my drive-way and I could see it plain as day, walking across my neighbors lawn.”  “John” is the gentleman that reported his sighting to police authorities. 

In the police report, “John” described the cat-like creature to be 5-6 feet long (holy guacamole!) not including the tail, and resembling the features of a mountain lion.  Southold Police authorities feel they ” may be onto something” from the report and descriptions given by “John” as Southold Police Chief, Carlisle Cochran Jr. commented on Friday.  Chief Cochran further explained that he “doesn’t think it’s running stray in Bayview,” and “has to believe that it’s somebody’s pet that just gets out once in a while.” 

A spokeswoman for the state Department of Environmental Conservation said investigators have yet to see any sign of mountain lions.  They haven’t found any tangible evidence of scat, feces, or any sort of animal remains.  Additionally, spokeswoman Aphrodite Montalvo further claimed that mountain lions haven’t been native to Long Island since pre-Colonial times. 

Unfortunately, “John” doesn’t have any pictures of the beast.  I found Chief Cochran’s theory to be funny. “Hey, it’s just a pet that gets out every now and then, no problem!”  Chief, we’re talking about a 5-6 foot (not including tail, of course) “mountain lion” roaming the streets of Long Island.  Being that the state Department of Environmental Conservation is performing further investigations, the the Bayview Beast may be real, as “John” now isn’t the only person who feels we have probably cause.  Chief, in all seriousness do you think that somebody is housing a 5-6 foot “pet” in a residential neighborhood in Southold?  (It’s great with children.)   I’m sure “John” and the other neighbors would have noticed the owner walking the beast with a leash on asking wondering what the heck it is.

But hey, it’s just somebody’s pet that gets out once in a while right?  Maybe the 5-6 foot beast took a walk into town to enjoy a cup white chocolate mocha at Starbucks and read Newsday?  Chief Carlisle Cochran really believes that this is not a stray animal and has been domesticated on Long Island.  (I stick by my story!)

And the question still remains, where is the Bayview Beast now?          

Newsday Article: 10/25/08

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8 Responses to “The Bayview Beast: Southold, Long Island.”

  1. The Suffolk Times first published this story on Monday Oct. 20. Unlike Newsday, which relied on interviews with officials and records, we went to the site and spoke with two eyewitnesses who saw this big cat on three different occasions, and we saw the places where the cat was seen. The guy who didn’t want us to use his last name really is named “John.” (We have his name but withheld it on his request.)

    Newsday did a great disservice by making light of this sighting and likening it to the bloated carcass of a raccoon or something that washed ashore in Montauk and caused a big media sensation — your “Montauk monster.”

    In my opinion, this big cat is real and it’s probably an abandoned pet— yes, pet! Don’t make light of this! This is not uncommon. Stupid people illegally try to domesticate wild animals like this all the time. Then, when they can’t handle them, or when the novelty wears off, they release or abandon them. It’s inhumane. And potentially dangerous. This is no joke.

    I interviewed one expert on mountain lions (aka cougars, pumas) this morning who said it’s not impossible for this to be a female puma living in the wild, but he thought it more likely it is an abandoned pet.

    See our story at

  2. Village of Port Jefferson Resident says:

    Port Jeff Panther! Puma of Port Jeff!
    Cat or Cougar? in Port Jefferson, NY…

    Wednesday Nov 11, 2008
    Veterans Day

    Wednesday Nov 11, 2008 Veterans Day evening. Pulling into my driveway around 11:30 pm while opening the automatic garage door via remote from the car, I witnessed a large animal spring from the right front side of car onto the grass in an instant. I observed what appeared to be a large cat, tan/grayish in color, rear hindquarters with a long bushy tail with a darkish tip. It must have been startled when I pulled into the driveway. It jumped / sprang to the height to the top of the hood of the car around waist height, approx. 3.5 feet. It had a distinctive cat-like prance. It took a moment for my brain to register what I had witnessed in the moonlight. It was too big to be a house cat. No canine or dog moves like this. It was distinctive cat movement! It was the size of a full sized domestic dog and did not appear to be a fox. It appeared to be a large cat 3 too 4.5 feet in length, which resembled a mountain lion…

    Lighting: It was a clear night with a full/quarter moon, meaning no reference to werewolves. Along with the moon light the post and porch light were on. The interior dim garage door light and car headlights were also on. The animal I observed was in the driveway that sprang off onto the lawn speedily! I jumped out of the car to go after whatever it was. It took me a moment for my brain to conceive what I potentially just seen, even though it was nighttime I have a keen eye and photographic memory. In that instance I jumped out of the car and replayed that scenario over in my head 3 to 4 times in a 5 second span. In my head I knew what I witnessed, but I didn’t believe it. So I chased after it. It ran to a lightly wooded area across the street on my neighbor’s property. I scanned the neighbor’s property listening for movement within the leaves, and I honed in on two dots staring back at me with a slight outline of a head and ears from the cascading moonlight. They were six inches apart, nickel/quarter sized in diameter. The reason why I saw them staring back at me was due to the reflection from the post light. If you’ve ever seen deer’s eyes caught in the headlights, that’s what it looked like. The eyes staring back at me were not close to the ground like a typical house cat, they were a foot and a half too two feet from the ground, the height typically of a full sized domestic dog. I was intrigued by what I had witnessed on my neighbor’s property at 11:30 pm at night. I moved and then heard the animal’s footstep crunching in the leaves, but it did not have a scamper of a domestic cat or cadence of a domestic dog. It had a walking pattern of a larger heavier big pawed animal with a large gate like that of a human walking while walking on leaves. I couldn’t believe my ears and eyes so I sprinted in the house to get a high powered flashlight, and then ran to the center of the street and scanned my neighbor’s front property but didn’t see anything with the flashlight. I then heard the creature walking across my neighbor’s property and driveway, and then into the adjacent neighbors backyard, which took about 5 minutes or so. I did not want to pursue the animal in my neighbor’s backyard so not to startle any neighbors so close to midnight.

    My observation of this animal / wildlife is that it was very stealthy and had big cat behaviors and movements. Definitely not a domestic cat or dog, fox, or deer. Being a cat lover myself and owing a domestic cat for 16 years and as someone who understands feline behaviors and movements. And someone who just came back from a Halloween weekend trip, wile visiting a zoo down in Cape May, South-New Jersey. While at the Cape May Zoo I observed big cats like cheetahs, snow leopard, lion and an ocelot. From what I saw and witnessed from that brief moment of sight and audio, was that this was close to a North American mountain lion, also known as the cougar, panther or puma. This all took place in Port Jefferson, NY a suburb of Long Island on the north shore. My intention is not to startle or alarm anyone, but to make the US Fish and Wildlife Service – Northeast Region and the local area residence aware that I witnessed a 3 too 4.5 foot big cat in Port Jefferson Village, and that wildlife exists even in suburbia!

    The animal was startled by my car and myself in my driveway the other night.
    My conclusion as to why the animal was on the property, is because there is a running water fountain on the front property for it to potentially get a drink of fresh water from, and note there was no garbage out that evening for morning pick up. I am completely intrigued by this brief encounter. To the contraire this is NO monster or strange unknown creature, but I feel it is a North American Mountain Lion, AKA: Eastern Cougar that some how with its lack of habitat is rooming suburbia either due to getting lost or is trying to find his or her way back home ware ever that is? Note to fellow long Islanders I DID NOT feel threatened by it, if anything it was threatened by me, if you ever see it I suggest making some noise like clapping your hands, and calling the local US Fish and Wildlife Service – Northeast Region (413) 253-8200 so it may be relocated to better suited habitat. This just reaffirms to me that we need more local conservation of wild lands. I am in the process of contacting US Fish and Wildlife Services to report what I witnessed in detail. (Although generally presumed extinct in the wild, eastern cougars remain protected by the Endangered Species Act.

    This is a reelection of a real deal event! No BS!

    A Village of Port Jefferson Resident

  3. Village of Port Jefferson Resident says:

    It makes me second-guess going out at night this time of year in the front and back yard to observe the nights sky

    Northeast Regional Office
    U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
    300 Westgate Center Drive
    Hadley, MA 01035-9589

    Contact Info
    Switchboard: (413) 253-8200
    Fax: (413) 253-8308
    Federal Relay Service for Deaf and
    Hard-of-Hearing: (800) 877-8339
    The eastern cougar (Puma concolor cougar) once roamed the eastern United States from Maine to South Carolina and west from Michigan to Tennessee. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has for years presumed the eastern cougar was extinct, having no verifiable evidence, such as DNA, to the contrary.
    Although generally presumed extinct in the wild, eastern cougars remain protected by the Endangered Species Act. Eastern cougars historically ranged from Michigan, southern Ontario, eastern Canada and Maine south to South Carolina and west across Tennessee. At one time, they lived in every eastern state in a variety of habitats including coastal marshes, mountains and forests.

  4. Josh Grobly says:

    Great post man… Love your writing! Can’t wait to see more. Is there a subscribe feature here?

  5. K. Smith says:

    What type of RSS feed do you use here, because i can’t seem to get it working with my reader… 🙁 hopefully I’ll figure it out because I like this place!

  6. Israel Upmann says:

    I saw a black animal the size of a Labrador moving away from me on my property in East Hampton on October 19, 2010 at 6.13pm and took a fence of 8 ft. The legs were placed one in front of the other in a straight line. I did not see the head of the animal. I was 30 feet away and on the 2nd floor of the house. The animal “snaked” forward and had a long, solid tail.

  7. Israel Upmann says:

    I had a panther in my back yard on October 19, 2010.
    The police is not listening. HELP.

  8. Operablogs says:

    Death when it comes will have no denial