A car hit and badly injured a mountain lion on Interstate 44 in eastern Laclede County early Tuesday morning.
When State Troopers arrived on the scene around 6:30 a.m. they found the animal badly injured and suffering. A decision was made to kill the lion and put it out of its misery.
Wildlife damage control biologist Jim Braithwaite stated that the dead lion was an adult male weighing approximately 150 pounds.
According to Braithwaite, this was the 54th confirmed mountain lion sighting in Missouri, and the first adult male. The others have all been juvenile males. This was also the first confirmed lion sighting in the region since a trail camera snapped a photograph of one 15 years ago.
A full necropsy along with DNA testing to determine its place of origin will take place at the Missouri Department of Conservation facility in Columbia.