A Cougar for Christmas: Mountain Lion Strolls Through a California Backyard
National Park Service researchers are trying to identify the lion, and Sherry has gathered photos of paw prints as well to help them determine its age and size. According to Scott Sharaga of the National Park Service, no mountain lions have been recently reported in the Newbury Park area. Wherever it came from, this mountain lion’s stroll through their neighborhood provided an early Christmas present for Sherry and her husband. Mountain lion sightings are extremely rare as the animal typically avoids people.
Sherry lives near the 101 Freeway, west of the site where the National Wildlife Federation is working with a group of dedicated partners to build what could be the largest wildlife crossing in the world to give mountain lions the room they need to roam. Los Angeles area freeways often prove deadly to these cats and other wildlife trying to cross the road in search of new territory or food, and the population of cougars in the Santa Monica Mountains faces extinction if a solution isn’t found. Thanks to concerned citizens like Sherry who want to be good neighbors to wildlife, the #SaveLACougars campaign is gathering much support.
UPDATE: Good news! California Fish and Wildlife, along with the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office and the National Park Service, successfully captured and relocated this cat, now identified as P34. She’s a 75 pound, 14 month year-old female and NPS researchers fitted her with a research collar before releasing her in order to track her movements in the future.
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