P-56’s tragic death at the hands of the CDFW and an irresponsible livestock owner is totally unacceptable and they must be held accountable by the public.
The Federation made a PRA request directly to the CDFW and we are awaiting responsive records. The CDFW issued this depredation permit “in the dark” on Jan. 26, 2020 to this landowner without contacting another agency in the National Recreation Area — primarily the National Park Service — who had collared P-56 several years ago. Seeking prior remedy and preventing his death was easy and there for the asking, and yet it was a colossal fail. The CDFW failed to protect one of our most precious and threatened male mountain lions for an irresponsible livestock owner who failed to protect or fully enclose her own sheep pens — thus, in essence, she provided bait for P-56 and the CDFW gave her a permit to kill him.
P-56 was a valuable public resource. The public has invested millions of dollars in preserving habitat and in research to try and keep mountain lions from extinction in the Santa Monica Mountains, and yet the CDFW gave the green light to eradicate this public resource to a private business owner who could have easily taken responsibility and protected her own sheep. If “public noticing” had just been a requirement for the CDFW prior to issuing a depredation permit this senseless tragedy would never have happened.
The onus is on the owner — if you live in the urban wildland interface in the Santa Monica Mountains you must take responsibility for having livestock and protect them by enclosing their pens — in essence therefore protecting our most valuable wildlife assets. It is a travesty of unbelievable consequence — we can never get P-56 back. Senseless death. The public deserves transparency and accountability.