The capture of P-41 in May 2015 was a major step in our study of mountain lions in the region. This male, estimated at the time to be eight years old, was the first lion tracked in the Verdugo Mountains, a small range between the Santa Monica and San Gabriel mountains.
P-41 was found dead on October 4, 2017 in the Verdugo Mountains, near the Shadow Hills neighborhood. His GPS collar failed early in the summer of 2017, so biologists were unsure how, if at all, the La Tuna Fire a few weeks earlier affected him. A necropsy conducted by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife found that the remains were too decomposed to the determine the cause of death, but lab results found six anticoagulant rodenticides in his system.
Studying lions outside the Santa Monica Mountains helps us identify landscape connectivity and movement corridors in the region and gives us a better understanding of how these large carnivores survive in an increasingly urbanized and fragmented environment.