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Grizzly bears, black bears, wolves, coyotes, cougars/ mountain lions,bobcats, wolverines, lynx, foxes, fishers and martens are the suite of carnivores that originally inhabited North America after the Pleistocene extinctions. This site invites research, commentary, point/counterpoint on that suite of native animals (predator and prey) that inhabited The Americas circa 1500-at the initial point of European exploration and subsequent colonization. Landscape ecology, journal accounts of explorers and frontiersmen, genetic evaluations of museum animals, peer reviewed 20th and 21st century research on various aspects of our "Wild America" as well as subjective commentary from expert and layman alike. All of the above being revealed and discussed with the underlying goal of one day seeing our Continent rewilded.....Where big enough swaths of open space exist with connective corridors to other large forest, meadow, mountain, valley, prairie, desert and chaparral wildlands.....Thereby enabling all of our historic fauna, including man, to live in a sustainable and healthy environment. - Blogger Rick

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Saturday, October 10, 2015

Locked in by Freeways and subject to death by the secondary effects of rodenticides used by homeowners to kill rats, the 10 or so Pumas in Los Angeles are under dire stress, with 3 young "cats" recently discovered dead by the Santa Monica Park Service personnel(rodenticide the likely killing agent)..........Many are at work in the State Legislature to get a total ban of the poisons and local folks and the Caltrans transportation people are seeking to raise the $30 million needed to get the wildlife overpass on the 101 freeway at the Lost Hills Exit in Agoura built----which would allow movement of the "Cats" in and out of L.A., upping the odds of the population refreshing it's gene pool and improving the odds for the Pumas long term persistence in Americas 2nd largest city

One of the 10 or so Pumas left in the Greater Los Angeles basin
This picture taken 10 minutes north of where I live

Three young mountain lions have been found dead recently in
 the Santa Monica Mountains over the last several weeks, 
according to the National Park Service. The most recent to be
 discovered was P-34, a female who was apparently killed by rat 
P-34 was found dead on a Point Mugu State Park trail last week, 
Sept. 30, by a runner, according to the Park Service. Dr. Seth Riley, 
wildlife ecologist for the Park Service, told KPCC that the lion is
 being tested for the presence of harmful toxins. In the meantime,
 initial examinations make National Park Service biologists 
suspect anticoagulant rodenticides caused the death.
“Basically they found a bunch of free blood in her chest cavity 
and blood around her heart and no other signs of trauma that 
should have caused that," Riley said. "So that’s the kind of 
thing you typically find when an animal has bled to death 
from lack of ability to clot the blood.”
Rodenticides have been shown to be deadly for coyotes
 and raptors and lead to deaths from mange in bobcats, 
but their effects on mountain lions still aren't well
 understood. The Santa Monica Mountains puma 
population has the only two instances of death 
attributed solely to rodenticide ingestion in 
Southern California. 
"The truth is we're putting these poisons out
 there, affecting all kinds of wild animals; we
 really don't have a clue, in my opinion, what 
effects they may or may not be having beyond
 the basic effects of affecting their ability to clot 
the blood. But in the cases of P-3 and P-4 and
 it looks likely in the case of P-34, those
 consequences have been lethal," Riley said. 
P-34's sibling P-32 was killed in August after
 being struck by a vehicle on Interstate 5. 
Last month, P-43 and a sibling's remains were 
found, according to a release from the Park 
Service. The 3-month olds were were eaten
 by another animal. P-43's mother P-23 has 
had two litters, both of which were killed by 
other animals. 
Two other mountain lions and many coyotes
 have died from poison as well, with exposure 
to the poison also causing a severe disease 
epidemic in bobcats, according to the release.
Kian Schulman, founder of Poison Free
 Malibu, which is working towards a total
ban of rodenticides and pesticides from the
 City of Malibu, said the death of P-34 
points to an ongoing problem of rodenticide use.
“We must do something immediately about
 this cruel and unnecessary poisoning to our 
wildlife. This is a major disaster in our wildlife
 ecosystem here, and strong actions need to be
 applied as soon as possible,” Schulman said.
The population falls within a portion of the 
Santa Monica Mountains that is largely isolated 
by highways and development. 
A large push is underway to raise funds for a
 wildlife bridge that would extend over the 101
-freeway at Liberty Canyon in Agoura Hills. 
Beth Pratt-Bergstrom, California Director for 
the National Wildlife Federation, said the
 crossing is important in light of the recent
 deaths, because any losses are significant in
 such a small and isolated population. 
“They are on an island right now. Let’s ge
t them off an island. It doesn’t mean these 
problems won’t occur, but a wildlife crossing 
will make this population much more viable 
so when these things do occur, there’s much
 more of a robust movement so that these 
cats have a future,” she said.

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