Fun Facts About Mountain Lions and P22

Earlier this year I wrote a blog post about the children's book The Cat That Changed America by Tony Lee MoralThe Cat That Changed America tells a fictionalized account of the mountain lion P22 that lives in Griffith Park in downtown Los Angeles.  Even though P22 is a bit of a celebrity in the Los Angeles area, people outside of Los Angeles were surprised to learn there really is a mountain lion living in the middle of the city!  They wanted to learn more about P22 and mountain lions in general.  In this blog post, I'll be sharing five fun facts about mountain lions and relating them to P22.  Keep reading to learn more!

Five fun facts about mountain lions and P22, the mountain lion that lives in Griffith Park, downtown Los Angeles, California. #kellysclassroomonline

Disclosure: Affiliate links to Amazon are included in this post.

There are several types of mountain lions.

Panthers, cougars, pumas, and catamounts are subspecies of mountain lions.  P22 is a puma.

Fun Facts About Mountain Lions and P22

Mountain lions can be found throughout North and South America.

They are highly adaptable and can live in mountains, woodlands, deserts, and wetlands. Some... like P22... can adapt and live in urban areas.

Fun Facts About Mountain Lions and P22

Mountain lions are strict carnivores.

Deer is their meat of choice, but they will eat small animals when deer aren't available. P22 settled in Griffith Park because he was able to find plenty of food to eat there.  It is believed... but not proven... that P22 went hunting in a nearby zoo and ate one of its koala bears.  Whoa!

Fun Facts About Mountain Lions and P22

Female mountain lions give birth every two years or so.

Their litters range in size from one to six cubs. The cubs will stay with their mothers for 24 to 26 months. P22 is a male mountain lion, however, and lives alone in Griffith Park... no other mountain lions in the area.  Unless he leaves the park in search of a mate, he will not father any cubs.

Fun Facts About Mountain Lions and P22

Mountain lions are a threatened species.

However, some subspecies of mountains are endangered or extinct. The eastern cougar was declared extinct in 2011 and the Florida panther is now 'critically endangered.' Hunting and habitat destruction are the main causes of death for mountain lions. Habitat destruction is one theory as to why P22 claimed his territory in Griffith Park.

Fun Facts About Mountain Lions and P22

To learn more about P22's story, watch this video by National Geographic:

Did you enjoy learning these facts about mountains and the famous P22? If so, check out these blog posts to learn fun facts about more animals:

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