Los Angeles is painting the town red this weekend to celebrate its favorite celebrity mountain lion for P-22 Day on October 22. Declared a holiday by the City of Los Angeles in 2016, the National Wildlife Federation partnered up with the Santa Monica Mountains Fund and other community supporters to host a festival that honors the feline known for crossing two major southern California freeways and venturing out to live on his own in Griffith Park. The festival goal is to raise awareness of the dangers facing urban wildlife and raise funds to build a wildlife crossing, which supporters say would help local mountain lions roam more freely throughout their urban ecosystem. Studies indicate freeways have not only killed 17 lions attempting to cross since 2002, but overall development has pushed lions like P-22 closer into extinction.
Click the images below to learn more about P-22, other local mountain lions, and the intersection of people, our built environments and urban wildlife.