It seems as though all the news of recent years has been about the Mountain Lions in our local mountains, and it’s been kinda sad news. Well I am here to present happy news!!!
First up: Mountain Lion P-22
National Park Service researchers recaptured the Griffith Park mountain lion known as P-22 last month, and report that he appears healthy and has recovered from a serious bout with mange believed to be caused by rat poison.
“He’s gained some weight, his tail has filled out, and he no longer has skin lesions and scabs across his body and face,” said Jeff Sikich, a biologist with the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area.
“It’s highly likely that he continues to be exposed to rat poison, but for now he seems to be managing,” Sikich said.
Though trail cameras had picked up images that appeared to show him doing well, this is the first time biologists have examined him up close since they captured him in April 2014, when he was thinner and suffering from mange. When biologists recaptured the animal last month they replaced the battery in his GPS collar as the did in 2014. The 6-year-old P-22 weighed 123 pounds, about 15 pounds heavier than at his last capture. Read more here
Now, even better news… KITTENS!!!!
Two mountain lion kittens recently were discovered in the western end of the Santa Monica Mountains, National Park Service officials said Thursday.
The female and male kittens, now known as P-46 and P-47, were implanted with tracking devices after researchers located their den in a remote area.
“We continue to see successful reproduction, which indicates that the quality of the natural habitat is high for such a relatively urbanized area,” said Jeff Sikich, a biologist for Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area. “But these kittens have many challenges ahead of them, from evading other mountain lions, to crossing freeways, to dealing with exposure to rat poison.”
Sikich said he suspected that P-19, the mother, may have given birth based upon the way her GPS locations were localized during a three-week period, indicating that she was likely living with her kittens. The den was well-hidden among large boulders and thick brush. Researchers have been tracking the mother since 2010, when she was only a few weeks old. Her previous two litters were the result of inbreeding with her father, P-12, but the last known evidence of P-12 dates back to March of 2015.
DNA testing is underway to identify whether the father is P-12 or perhaps P-45, a newly discovered adult male. Read more here