SANTA MONICA (CBSLA) – Biologists have confirmed that a young mountain lion living in the Santa Monica Mountains is the daughter of a cougar who was hit and killed by a car in January.
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Biologists used DNA to prove that a mountain lion they recently tagged is P-54, the daughter of P-23, the National Park Service reported Thursday.
P-54, who is about 18 months old, was discovered in late February of 2017. P-54 is believed to be the product of inbreeding. Her mother is P-23 and her father is believed to be P-23’s half-brother, P-30.
A camera caught footage of P-54 that showed her “healthy and thriving,” the Santa Monica National Recreation Area wrote on Twitter.
In January, when P-54 was about a year old, her mother P-23 was struck and killed by a car on Malibu Canyon Road. At the time, biologists believed that P-54 would survive because most mountain lions leave their mothers between one and one-and-a-half years old.READ MORE: Police Investigating Shooting In South Los Angeles
The region’s freeway network and shrinking habitat has served to isolate the mountain lion population in the Santa Monica Mountains, biologists say. That has led to frequent cases of inbreeding.
P-23 was the 18th known case of a mountain lion killed on a freeway or road in the area since 2002, according to NPS officials.
In early March, the mountain lion known as P-64 completed a rare feet, crossed the 101 Freeway in the Liberty Canyon area of Agoura Hills. NPS researchers say the rare sighting highlights the area’s importance as an ideal location for a wildlife crossing.
Caltrans has proposed building a wildlife bridge across the 101 Freeway in Agoura Hills that would allow animals to travel between the Santa Monica Mountains and Simi Hills.MORE NEWS: Strike Averted: IATSE And AMPTP Have 'Basic Contract' Agreement, Per Officials With The Theatrical Stage Employees Union
The NPS has been studying mountain lion movements in the Santa Monica Mountains since 2002 using GPS collars.