Photo by Miguel OrdeĂ±ana
The famous Hollywood mountain lion, P-22, was compassionately euthanized six days after being struck by a hit-and-run driver. He was initially captured and outfitted with a tracking collar in 2012.
California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) officials announced that P-22, the Hollywood mountain lion, was euthanized on Saturday morning, December 17, six days after being struck by a hit-and-run driver on Los Feliz Blvd., just blocks from the lionâ€™s home in Griffith Park.
CDFW officials said a weakened and wounded P-22 was captured by wildlife officials in the same area the next day with a head injury consistent with being struck by a car. Underweight and dehydrated, P-22 received IV treatment and antibiotics for an eye injury.
â€śThis really hurts,â€ť CDFW Director Chuck Bonham said Saturday morning, fighting back tears. â€śItâ€™s been an incredibly difficult several days, and for myself, I felt the entire weight of the city of Los Angeles on my shoulders.â€ť (patch.com)
Wildlife officials noticed P-22 hadnâ€™t seemed himself in recent weeks and were planning to bring him in for a health evaluation.
â€śP-22 is old for a wild cat and recent behavioral changes, along with evidence of physical changes, could be indicative of difficulty continuing to thrive in the wild,â€ť noted Beth Pratt, California Regional Executive Director, National Wildlife Federation and Leader #SaveLACougars campaign.
National Park Service (NPS) wildlife biologists have been tracking mountain lions for about 20 years; P-22 was one of them when he moved into Griffith Park after crossing two freeways. He was initially captured and outfitted with a tracking collar in 2012.
â€śP-22 has given us so much,â€ť said Pratt. â€śHe captured the imagination of people around the globe, and his story inspired the building of the worldâ€™s largest urban wildlife crossing outside of Los Angeles, The Wallis Annenberg Wildlife Crossing in Agoura Hills, so that other area mountain lions donâ€™t suffer his same fate.â€ť
In her eulogy for P-22, Pratt said, â€śI am so grateful I was given the opportunity to say goodbye to P-22. Although I have advocated for his protection for a decade, we had never met before. I sat near him, looking into his eyes for a few minutes, and told him he was a good boy. I told him how much I loved him. How much the world loved himâ€¦, she wrote. â€śP-22 never fully got to be a mountain lion. For his whole life he suffered the consequences of trying to survive in unconnected space,â€ť she wrote.
A memorial service is planned for the animal sometime after the holidays, but no specific details were announced.