Shooting of mountain lion cubs in HMB results in new law curbing use of lethal force

California passed a law today to limit the killing of mountain lions, a legislative effort initiated after two mountain lions were shot by game wardens in Half Moon Bay late last year. After the shooting the California Department of Fish and Wildlife claimed the lions were 25-30 pounds in weight and posed a threat to the public, thus requiring lethal measures. An examination of the bodies revealed that the lions were in fact cubs, approximately fourteen pounds in weight and probably four months old.

California State Senator Jerry Hill and Assemblyman Rich Gordon sponsored the bill.

According to Hill’s press release the new law “requires that nonlethal procedures be used when DFW responds to a mountain lion that has not been designated as an imminent threat to public health or safety, meaning the mountain lion has not exhibited aggressive behaviors toward responders.”

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