Nature met reality in the harshest way imaginable once again recently when a mother defended her 5-year-old son from an attacking mountain lion.

The mother, acting upon what can only be pure instinct, pounced on the child in their front yard and pried the cat’s jaws off the boy’s head, according to the Aspen Times. The boy was reportedly playing outside with his older brother at around 8 pm on Friday when the incident happened. 

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“She was able to pry the cat’s jaws open,” Deputy Michael Buglione told the paper. “She’s a hero.”

The boy sustained injuries to his face, head and neck while the mother had lacerations to her hands and legs. Both were expected to recover. 

The same cannot be said for the mountain lion. Following the attack a Forest Service officer killed a mountain lion in the family’s front yard. Officials were said to be also tracking another lion that was seen in the area of the attack.

In a similar incident last week in Orlando, Florida, a father attempted to pry his 2-year-old son from the grips of an alligator, but unfortunately without the same results.

In a statement by Colorado Parks and Wildlife officials said they continue to caution individuals that lion sightings are increasing across Colorado due to a growing population encroaching on big cat habitat. The last lion attack in the state occurred in July 2015.

Photo credit: Pitkin County Sheriff