Here’s Why You Shouldn’t Believe a Black Panther Was Spotted in Grayson, Kentucky
If you're going to try to convince the populace that something fairly outrageous is true, please do it right. (And to be fair, what we're about to discuss comes with a disclaimer but you just KNOW there are those who will believe it, so on we go.)
IN DAVIESS COUNTY, IT'S A "PANTHER" HERE AND A "PANTHER" THERE
Have you ever wondered why that big creek in southern Daviess County that seems to flood at the drop of hat is called Panther Creek? Or why the Daviess County High School mascot is a panther? It's because many, many years ago, it has been said that panthers roamed these parts.
And in the interest of full disclosure, that's borderline impossible to find online; I have the info because it's been passed down over the generations. But no one I know has ever seen one and I've never seen any stories online or in print that proclaims the sighting of a panther.
DON'T BELIEVE EVERYTHING YOU SEE ON SOCIAL MEDIA
But there IS a Facebook page that's trying. It's called "Graysun KY" and right up front, it announces itself as a parody site. But you know social media and human nature. Someone is bound to take one look at that, not dig too deep, and shout to the four winds that panthers have returned to the Commonwealth.
And by the way, this is Grayson, Kentucky, not Grayson COUNTY, Kentucky. Grayson, the town, is way the heck over in Carter County. And that's my beef with the parody site.
If you're going to talk panthers, at least imply that they're in Daviess County.
KENTUCKY'S "BIG CAT" HISTORY
Seriously, Kentucky hasn't seen any big cat populations (bobcats don't count; they're not big) in more than eight decades. But don't take my word for it; no less an authority than the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife reports that the once-native eastern cougar vanished in the 1930s. A book called Mammals of Kentucky goes a step further by relating that there have been no recorded sightings of mountain lions since 1899.
Of course, the man who believes he spotted a large cat (bigger-than-your-house-tabby large) might beg to differ. He turned his information and picture into Kentucky DFW, who installed video cameras near where it was supposedly spotted. But nothing more was ever heard about the sighting or a big cat. This happened three years ago in Jefferson County and there hasn't been anything pop up about it online since.
So enjoy life, "Graysun KY" and keep making us laugh because we need it. But if there are those who might go try to find panthers in Carter County, Kentucky, well...I just might not be very surprised.