Santa Monica Observer - Community, Diversity, Sustainability and other Overused Words

Mountain Lions are Cute, Furry and Hated: "They Should All Be Hanging On Someone's Wall."

On Social Media, Ranchers and Farmers Militate for laws allowing them to shoot more big cats.

 

December 21, 2016

Facebook

"Love it. Keep up the good work and congrats!!!!" posted a woman named Megan when a man identified as Jesse posted a photo of himself with a dead mountain lion near Saint Maries, Idaho. Mountain lion hunting is permitted in Idaho. Photo is dated November 2016.

Santa Monica and the City of Los Angeles, are full of latte sipping city folk with great sympathy for mountain lions. But not everybody loves the big cats, which are also called cougars, pumas and catamounts in other parts of North America. They are accused of killing pets, and farm animals such as alpacas, goats, llamas and chickens. They are regarded as vermin to be exterminated by some.

On various social media such as Facebook, California ranchers and others who live in the hills of Agoura militate for a change in the law that would allow them to shoot more big cats. "I do not tolerate animal rights activists," said the moderator of one Facebook group.

"The good people of Santa Monica are a different kind of strange; let P45 roam free they say; kill what ever he wants other animals, kids, hikers, Grandma; as far as I'm concerned P45 hide should be hanging on someones wall ....." P-45 is a male 2 year old mountain lion who killed 11 alpacas in November and a dozen or so Llamas last year, after breaking into pens where the animals were kept. He did not consume the livestock--just killed them. An Agoura Hills rancher obtained a shoot to kill permit on the lion, but when she tried to execute on it, the outcry was such that she had to give up. She announced through her lawyer, that she would instead have the CDFW tranquilize and move the lion to wildlife refuge.

"They decided to live out in nature, and then they can't handle nature," said one Santa Monica mom.

"More deer on the west slope than ever in history," posts a man named "Thomas." "So of course more Super predators. We are on 238 Acres the Bobcats are very brave the mountain lions watch me but I haven't seen him (P-45) yet."

"They do need to change something," posts "Jessica. "What I would do is issue about 50-100 tags once a year at a pretty good amount of money. No way everyone is going to get one, there would be money and it would put back a little fear in them. Animals are so much smarter then we give them credit for, and these know we are not going to touch them."

"My first one. What a rush" Posted a man identified as Jesse, alongside a photo of himself with a dead mountain lion near Saint Maries, Idaho. The photo is dated November, 2016. "Love it. Keep up the good work and congrats!!!!" replied a woman named Megan. Mountain lion hunting is permitted in Idaho, and there is no reason to believe he broke the law by shooting the animal.

"Why hunt hard when there's easier prey to grab?" asks Richard. "Livestock and household pets will sustain them all day long. There has been lions in Fresno Clovis for years. We just don't hear about them unless we know law enforcement."

Many of the posts are intended to document where the animals were seen, and to warn others. An example from "Terry" in November 2016: "I have a lion visiting me and taking down my goats after jumping an 8' fence. The total is now 11. I am near Madera between Old Owl Road and Halibut Lake Annex on Road 187."

"Why hunt hard when there's easier prey to grab?" asks Richard. "Livestock and household pets will sustain them all day long. There has been lions in Fresno Clovis for years. We just don't hear about them unless we know law enforcement."

"Just so y'all can see they're damn near everywhere in this state....... they have a wider range than half of their natural prey....." posts a woman named KCLO, along with a map of California.

The California Department of Fish and Wildlife issued about 500 permits to kill Mountain Lions in 2016, which represents about 5% of the total population of Mountain lions in the State. It is not known how many of the permits were actually executed.

 

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