This litter was abandoned by their mother and subsequently starved to death within a couple months of their birth. They are believed to be the first kittens of P-42; the father is currently unknown. Like all wild animals, many young do not survive until adulthood.
One theory about their abandonment is that P-42 was trying to distract adult male P-27 from preying on the kittens when he visited the den area. She ended up traveling with him for six days. Researchers have seen this scenario before, in which the mother leaves with a visiting male to seemingly distract him and then return to move kittens to a new location. In this case, however, P-42 did not return.