LOS FELIZ—The mountain lion, P-22, was caught on video trying to cool down from the weekend heat at a Los Feliz home on Saturday, April 9. The homeowner spotted the wildcat drinking from her backyard pond and she captured it on video, ABC7 reported.
Homeowner, Sarah Dubog was outside to clean her pond when she spotted P-22. Dubog made eye-contact with the animal who kept drinking from the pond. The mountain lion left 20 minutes later to head back into the hills.
This is the second time in the past week that P-22 has been spotted at a Los Angeles residence, ABC7 reported. On Wednesday, April 6, P-22 was captured on home-security footage, walking past the front door of a Hollywood Hills residence. The homeowner, Kevin Prince, says this is the fourth time in the past year that he’s spotted the wildcat roaming around his property.
Prince originally set up motion cameras to help prove that it was P-22 who was infiltrating his home, ABC7 reported.
“I’m from New York. I am used to pizza rat. I am not used to lions at my front door,” Prince told ABC7. “I’m from the concrete jungle, moving to the literal jungle. This place is crazy,” Prince added.
Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area biologists have been radio-tracking P-22 (or Puma 22) since they discovered him in Griffith Park back in April 2012.
SMMNRA biologists captured and fitted P-22 with a GPS collar, and recorded measurements and collected blood tissue samples before releasing him back to where he was captured. Those samples were later tested by UCLA and UC Davis and revealed that P-22 was most likely born in the Santa Monica Mountains. He walked 50 miles and would have had to cross both the 405 and 101 Freeways to make it to Griffith Park, National Park Service officials said.
He became a viral sensation after wildlife photographer, Steve Winter, captured a photo of him roaming Griffith Park in front of the Hollywood Sign, which was featured in the December 2013 issue of National Geographic.
P-22 has made his home in Griffith Park and surrounding areas for a decade now, despite what SMMNRA scientists believed he would do. Mountain lions require around 250 square miles of “home ranges,” which is much bigger than what Griffith Park offers – scientists believed he would have left the area a long time ago.
“It’s a testament to the health of the natural systems in the L.A. area, including Griffith Park, that the full complement of wildlife can persist here,” Wildlife Ecologist Seth Riley once said.
Mountain lion sightings are an extremely rare occurrence, however P-22 has been spotted countless times in residential areas. Back in April 2014, Canyon News reported that the wildcat was found under a crawlspace of a Los Feliz home. On Friday, April 8 2022, Santa Monica Mountain officials tracked P-22 in Silverlake, the furthest south he’s ever trekked since living in Griffith Park.
P-22 was also the suspect to have slain a female koala named Killarney of the Los Angeles Zoo back in 2016.
According to National Park Service officials, P-22 is reportedly 12-years-old now, which is nearing the end of the average lifespan for cougars. Despite this, he appears to be alive and well.
The National Wildlife Federation holds an annual P-22 Day Festival to spread awareness on mountain lion preservation. Contributions to help fund mountain lion research and the Wildlife Crossing Project can be made here: https://savelacougars.org/giving/.