Councilmen divided over Griffith Park mountain lion in the wake of koala killing

P-22 before his first capture in March of 2012 | National Park Service

P-22 before his first capture in March of 2012 | National Park Service

LOS FELIZ —  Should P-22, the famous Griffith Park  mountain lion believed responsible for killing a koala last week at the L.A. Zoo stay or go? In the wake of the attack, councilmen Mitch O’Farrell and David Ryu have taken opposing sides, with  O’Farrell saying it’s time to  consider moving the animal to a remote location while Ryu said that relocating P-22 “would not be in the best interest of protecting our wildlife species.”

O’Farrell, who heads the City Council’s Arts, Parks, and River committee,  issued a statement saying that the mountain lion needs a new home where he would  have more room to roam and be less likely to have a run in with a human or be killed crossing a freeway.

“As much as we love P-22 at Griffith Park, we know the park is not ultimately suitable for him,” O’Farrell said in a statement quoted by the L.A. Times. “We should consider resettling him in the environment he needs.”

But Ryu, whose Council District 4 includes Griffith Park, says P-22 should remain free to roam the hills of Griffith Park.

“The incident at the Los Angeles Zoo is incredibly unfortunate,” Ryu said in a statement issued this afternoon. “However, relocating P22 would not be in the best interest of protecting our wildlife species. Mountain lions are a part of the natural habitat of Griffith Park and the adjacent hillsides.”

Should P-22 be moved out of Griffith Park?


Poll Maker

Become an Eastside Animals sponsor


  1. Hate to say it, but P-22 is increasingly isolated and deprived in Griffith Park. He’ll only get bolder and more restless in his lethal prime. For his and our own good, he needs to be relocated to where he can live a full life and not on an island surrounded by an urban city.

    • sweet, so you are a wildlife biologist with intimate knowledge of how Mountain Lions react to urban environments?????? Right, you are NOT! So to put it simply…..you don’t know jack

  2. I think the Griffith Park area is P-22s turf. The L.A. Zoo needs to make proper arrangements for their animals! There are other animals, not just P-22, that would relish a caged in snack in the dead of night. Take them into safe quarters! P-22 and other animals that hunt at night can only just pick up the scent and think, “Jackpot!”

  3. P-22’s fate should be handled by wildlife and conservation agencies, not politicians. Council members should probably tackle crime, quality of human life issues, and making our city live-able. There are experts and their educated opinion should be heeded.

  4. true player for real

    I want a p-22 t-shirt. Print some, make it look cool, sell them, then use the money to CLOSE the zoo and possibly relocate P-22 to Bel Air.

  5. I’m not a fan of zoos. People can learn more about animals from TV shows or install outdoor theaters with large screens where children and others can see happy animals in there natural environment instead of a prison. This is P-22’s home and he should stay and not be punished for hunting. The zoo should be better protected from what’s on the outside maybe. The zoo should be wound down and closed sooner than later.

  6. P-22 for 13th council district!

  7. I should think it would be an honor and a relief for a pathetic captive zoo creature to be chosen by the blessed wild Puma for his meal. Keep Griffith Park Wild! It’s our duty! Wildlife corridors, asap!

  8. I will say what I have said since the first time people advocated leaving any mountain lion in an urban park: Potentially dangerous, wild animals do not belong in any urban park, they belong in the wilderness and should be relocated there.

    Unfortunately, too many people refuse to think — until someone gets attacked or killed. When that happens, I blame those people who insisted on leaving such a wild animal in an urban park for those injuries or deaths, and they will have to live with that on their conscience.

    When humans go into the wilderness, they must realize they take on wilderness dangers. But that does not and cannot be allowed to be the case in an urban park.

  9. Shouldn’t we use this as an opportunity to teach people about coexisting with wildlife? Sure it’s a mountain lion, but people have more to fear from aggressive coyotes in Griffith Park than P-22.

    Why was a old koala, known to walk around on the ground at night, left in the enclosure overnight? Even more so, when the zoo reps admit to having seen P-22 inside the zoo at night, wouldn’t that be a clue to lock up vulnerable animals for their safety? Does P-22 hang out near the hoof stock? Deer should be on his menu.

    We always warn people about coyotes going after vulnerable pets.. The zoo needs to take the clue here.

  10. a free animal eats a caged animal in a human created zoo and mitch wants to ban P-22…..

  11. Although I’m in Mitch O’Donnell’s district, I couldn’t disagree with him more. He seems reactionary and conservative in his approach to solving problems. Understanding little of this issue, he’s probably scared of P-22 creeping into his own fancy home.

    So he killed a koala – big deal. That’s why I don’t leave my cat out at night. Our lives are circumscribed as it is, with little interaction with the wild. P-22 is a heroic big cat, surviving in a hostile urban environment on his own, and obviously doing decently well. Don’t punish him for that. He’s doing what comes naturally. For Mitch, what comes naturally is putting up more crosswalk signs – that seems to be his only expertise. Leave mountain lion decisions to biologists.

Post a Comment

Please keep your comments civil and on topic and refrain from personal attacks. The moderator reserves the right to edit or delete any comments. The Eastsider's Terms of Use and Privacy Policy apply to comments submitted by readers. Required fields are marked *