Conrad was a young male caught in late 2007 (and tagged “502”) by California Fish & Game while roaming near an elementary school in Redlands, and LTB adopted him so that he would not be euthanized. Because we had no enclosure for him at the time, he had to live in quarantine for several months while we constructed his habitat.
After a vigorous health examination, Conrad was finally moved to his new home. At first, he tended to spend most of his time inside his “cave,” venturing outside only at night, as mountain lions are naturally timid. But with the patient encouragement of his care-givers, who spent hours each day talking and reading to him, he soon began to leave his cave to explore his new enclosure. Soon he was sleeping in his hammock, enjoying the huge logs which he claws to keep his nails trim, playing with his rubber ball, and relaxing in his waterfall pool. However, he’s still rather shy and emerges mostly at night and early in the morning.
Conrad adapted so well to his new home that we decided to teach him some important commands to help us better care for him. The first command he learned was to “go up,” which means to stand on his hind legs and stretch his body up against the fence. This allows his care-givers to see the underside of his body to safely check for any problems without having to tranquilize him.
One of our long-term goals at LTB is to construct a “Conservation Station” to serve as a home for rescued southern California wildlife such as mountain lions, foxes, owls, and others. This area will house animals that have been injured or caught because they might pose a threat to humans and, for whatever reason, cannot be returned to the wild.
This new facility will also include an Education Center, providing programs to inform and instruct the public – and especially children – about animal conservation and living in harmony with our native species. As a very intelligent mountain lion, Conrad will be a superb ambassador for these programs once the Conservation Station is complete.
(Click for more “Mountain Lion Facts“.)