Meet the Newest Mountain Lion of the Santa Monica Mountains
Well, she may not be the newest or youngest in our local mountains, but she is the most recent cougar to be trapped, tagged and released by the National Park Service, who has been conducting a study with them over the past seven years.
P-13 (they are named in the order they are caught) was captured on July 31st in the Hidden Valley region, which is the northwest sector of the mountains south of Newbury Park. She is now the third active GPS collar being tracked.
Park rangers with the Santa Monica National Recreation Area track the lions to study the effects of development on their habitat. As more open space is taken away, the less range each lion has to live within. Mountain lions tend to keep separate ranges and will fight to death over territory and food. Currently, most lions are living within each other's ranges, setting up the potential for fights. Several lions have been killed by P-1, the oldest lion known lion in the mountains whose GPS device was recently ripped off in a fight with an untagged lion. He is thought to be still living.