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Alberta Environment worker mauled by cougar, victim recovering in hospital

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GRANDE PRAIRIE, Alta. - An Alberta Environment worker is recovering in hospital after being mauled by a cougar.

An official says the woman was working at a field camp Tuesday night southwest of Grande Prairie when the big cat pounced in an unprovoked attack.

Co-workers managed to fight the cougar off and give the woman first aid before she was transported to hospital by air ambulance.

Alberta wildlife officers are trying to track down the cougar with the help of a dog team.

It's the first unprovoked attack by a cougar in Alberta since 2011 and officials say the cats are normally very shy animals that will leave an area if people are around.

It is not clear if the workers were carrying firearms or pepper spray to defend themselves against animal attacks.

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