SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — One of two mountain lions rescued from Orange County and cared for at San Diego Humane Society for four months has been released back into the wild.
The 6-month-old mountain lion cub was released on Monday after she and her sister came to SDHS. They were abandoned near Tijeras Creek Golf Course when their mom was hit by a vehicle.
The California Department of Fish and Wildlife determined that the cubs could not fend for themselves in Rancho Santa Margarita and requested SDHS's help. The first cub arrived at SDHS' Project Wildlife on Feb. 11 and the second arrived on May 1.
The second mountain lion had a left forearm fracture and needed surgery. She is still recovering at Ramona Wildlife Center.
During their care, the mountain lion cubs have limited human interaction in order to prevent "imprinting," or the critical time when an animal forms social attachments.
"We are very excited to have been a part of this pilot program for mountain lion rehab in California, as typically rescued mountain lion kittens are routed for sanctuaries," said Christine Barton, director of operations and wildlife rehabilitation at San Diego Humane Society’s Ramona Wildlife Center. "We hope these few months with us have provided her the extra time needed to fill the void left from losing her mother."