Mountain lions fill an important niche in the park. As a keystone species, they regulate populations of prey animals, such as deer and raccoons, and influence the movements of other predators, such as coyotes and bears. Yosemite has the potential to serve as a refuge for California’s mountain lions, which face threats from statewide habitat loss.

In 2019, your support helped scientists study Yosemite’s mountain lions, with a focus on understanding the feline’s numbers and needs in the park. Researchers used remote cameras to capture images of mountain lions in their natural habitat, and worked with highly trained detection dogs to conduct scat surveys and collect valuable genetic samples without disrupting the lions or their habitat. Results from the cameras and on-the-ground surveys will inform efforts to protect the species in Yosemite and throughout the state.

Your gifts supported vital research to help Yosemite serve as a habitat haven for California’s mountain lions.

Completed in partnership with California Department of Fish and Wildlife, Oregon State University, and University of California, Davis.