An underweight juvenile cougar was captured in Pescadero California when a janitor closed a door behind him before school opened. The male was seen entering the room and the janitor closed the door.
The young cat wandered onto the Pescadero High School campus before students or faculty arrived. He was spotted wandering into an English classroom and the janitor took action.
He was tranquilized by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife and taken to the Oakland Zoo for evaluation. He weighs about 40 pounds and appeared scared according to officials. He has a bad tooth that has to be extracted before he can be released, if authorities think he can survive on his own. The fish and wildlife department is involved in cougar rescues throughout the state. In April the zoo participated in rescuing an emaciated cougar kitten spotted by hikers in the San Mateo area. After a five day search the kitten was rescued and brought to the zoo. In such cases a decision is made whether the animal can survive on its own. Some are released others relocated to permanent homes.
Young male cougars have to travel long distances to establish territory. One such adventure is chronicled here. California has a fairly large population of cougars which can inhabit most parts of the state. Increasingly they are coming into contact with people. Humans move into their regions and their habitat becomes fragmented. CalTrans works actively to help provideover and under crossings to minimize human/animal conflict.