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State says animal seen in Winchester was probably not a mountain lion

The state Division of Fisheries and Wildlife has concluded that an animal spotted in Winchester Tuesday, originally thought to be a mountain lion, was most likely a coyote or dog, a spokeswoman for the organization said.

The sighting was reported in the neighborhood of Dunster Lane and Pepper Hill Drive, Winchester police said in a statement.

Environmental police found a set of the animal’s paw prints. Photos of the prints were sent to the Division of Fisheries and Wildlife for verification, police said.

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Because the photos were poor in quality, the exact identity of the animal is unknown, but the spacing of the toes suggests a member of the Canidae family, according to Amy Mahler, an Environmental police spokeswoman.

Sightings of mountain lions are rare in Massachusetts, Mahler said.

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