Meet P21, West Sonoma County’s second collared mountain lion

Meet P21, West Sonoma County’s second collared mountain lion

The Living with Lions team collared P21, a 130lb, 7-year old male mountain lion, near Cazadero on February 10 after being contacted by a local resident who had lost two goats to this big cat the night before.

Landowner David opted to spare this lion from certain death by depredation permit, recognizing a responsibility to safeguard the well-being of his animals and avoid the senseless death of a wild top-predator. The team dubbed this lion “Goliath.”

P21 is the second mountain lion to be fitted with a GPS collar in West Sonoma County. After capture, biological measurements and samples were taken to determine his age and health, as well as to map the genetic makeup of the region and state’s lion populations.

We are extremely excited to see the extent of his range, particularly as it may very likely share insight as to Paul’s (P14) coastal movement. P14 was a young male lion collared near Jenner after a similar predation event. Soon after being collared, we watched as he left Sonoma County and moved up and down the North Coast as far south as Fort Ross and as far north as Manchester. He was observed by members of the public on several occasions. In late July, he was killed by a landowner after a depredation permit was issued by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW). The permit was requested by the Point Arena landowner after 12 sheep were killed.

The stories of P21 and P14 are reminders to all of us living in mountain lion territory to secure our pets and livestock, especially at night. While not easy or inexpensive, it is proven to reduce conflict and losses to both our domestic and wild animals.

Please connect with us to learn more about improving your odds against mountain lion predation.

UPDATE 3/10/20: Over the course of the past month, we documented Goliath’s travel through the western Sonoma County hills north of the Russian River, adding to our understanding of our regional mountain lion population. Unfortunately, on March 6 he was killed by a landowner after another attack on unprotected livestock. This marks the fifth collared big cat to be killed since our study began in 2016, each one after a preventable conflict with livestock.

Are you struggling to create a nightime enclosure for your backyard pets and livestock? Check out this instructional video, How to build a Puma Proof Pen, created by Sonoma County Wildlife Rescue and friends of Living with Lions.