An “innovative” highway overpass covered in plants could be a path for mountain lions to cross the 101 freeway that splits California’s Santa Monica Mountains, conservationists say.
“Seth Riley, National Park Service wildlife ecologist along with his co-workers monitor many GPS-tagged big cats on the two sides of the freeway to keep a track of their numbers. They witnessed a male lion dubbed P12 from the north making its way across the freeway to join the secluded Santa Monica cats.”
The mountain lion came from the north and had genetic material that was new to the Santa Monica Mountains. Not only did he survive, be he became a dominant breeding male. He had many offspring and continues to have procreate.
Most mountain lions are not able to cross the freeway due to heavy traffic, constructions, barriers and fencing, which makes it nearly impossible to cross.
A future goal is to build a wildlife overpass. Wildlife overpasses are covered in vegetation and will help many animals, including mountain lions, to pass over the freeway.