Our wildlife cameras documented a single lion moving back and forth between the Apple Orchard Trail and the Rim Trail and Cougar Pond multiple times last week (the photo, above, is her at Cougar Pond on October 8 around 6 pm). Assuming it is the same cat (which we think it is), it takes her about 30 minutes to get from Cougar Pond to the end of the Apple Orchard Trail.
Why is she on the move?
Frequent regular movements like this can be a sign that the cat is feeding on a deer kill somewhere. When they are feeding regularly, they need to drink a lot so it is possible that she is traveling between her kill site and the creek to drink.
While on a mountain lion recon mission in mid-October, ACR Director of Stewardship Jeanne Wirka, Bouverie Preserve Resource Ecologist Jen Potts, and Dr. Quinton Martins, came across some older scat near the Apple Orchard Trail. This photo, at right, should give you a sense of the size, although fresh scat will not be white and it will have a pungent odor.
Bouverie Preserve scientists and docents are keeping watch for mountain lion scat on the trails. It's just one way we continue to monitor their movements within the Preserve and throughout the Sonoma Valley Wildlife Corridor, which spans approximately five miles connecting Sonoma Mountain on the west side of valley to the crest of the Mayacamas Mountains to the east.
To learn more about ACR’s habitat corridor partnerships in the Sonoma Valley, download the latest edition of The Ardeid (pdf).
BONUS VIDEO: Our wildlife cameras located at Bouverie Preserve and Modini Mayacamas Preserves have documented mountain lions, bears, skunks, coyote, fox and a host of bird life. Please view and share from our video library.
To learn more about living or recreating near mountain lion habitat, visit Felidae Conservation Fund’s “living with wildlife” page.