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We Saw A Mountain Lion Walking In Silver Lake. The Famous P-22 Takes A Stroll, Then Heads Home To Griffith Park

A mountain lion stands in the middle of a clearing, lit up by the flash of a remote camera.
P-22, captured on a remote camera in 2014.
(Courtesy National Parks Service
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Why yes, that was P-22, L.A.’s most famous mountain lion, spotted on the streets of Silver Lake Tuesday night. The celebrity cat strolled from his home under the Hollywood Sign all the way to Silver Lake, for a night on the town.

That's where residents spotted him slinking into backyards and strutting for the security cameras.

Residents in the area of Berkeley Circle and Silver Lake Boulevard chatted on social media and shared photos of a mountain lion wandering the neighborhood, sporting what appears to be a tracking collar.

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Ana Beatriz Cholo, Public Affairs Officer for the National Park Service, confirms that P-22's tracking collar data shows he was just east of the Silver Lake Reservoir last night.

By Thursday morning, Cholo was able to confirm P-22 had returned to his home base of Griffith Park.

Beth Pratt of the National Wildlife Federation says although P-22 has hit the town before, this may be his furthest journey yet.

Pratt — who calls herself P-22’s agent–— says she’s heartened to see how much love he’s getting from Silver Lake residents.

"I call him the Brad Pitt of the cougar world, P-22," she said. "You know, he's beloved by everybody just like Brad Pitt. He's aging well, just like Brad Pitt, but it's also, to me, deeper, right? There's something about having, you know, this wildness in the midst of the second largest city that I think a lot of people really connect to and love."

[Yes, we know P-22 isn't on Twitter but this made us laugh]

On a more serious note, Pratt adds that P-22 has forever “changed the face of conservation in L.A.”

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Assemblymember Laura Friedman of Glendale referenced P-22 when she introduced a bill last month that would create a framework for funding wildlife crossings, providing safe passage for wildlife in urban areas.

L.A. City Councilmember Mitch O'Farrell, who represents the area, weighed in on Twitter on Wednesday morning as well, including advice for what residents should do if they see the large cat:

The National Park Service, which studies and tracks local mountain lions, says it would not be unusual for P-22 to be in the area, given that neighborhood is within his territory.

If you spot P-22 in your neighborhood, Cholo advises to keep your distance and to send information about your sighting to biologists tracking him at the Santa Monica Mountains division of the National Park Service.

This isn't the first time he's left the confines of Griffith Park. Back in January he was spotted in Beachwood Canyon and a 2015 video showed him camped out underneath a home in Los Feliz.

What questions do you have about Southern California?

Updated March 9, 2022 at 3:36 PM PST
This story updated with the interview with Beth Pratt.