Trail Camera Catches Something Conservationists Have Been Dying To See

Her babies are finally here šŸ˜

Denise M. Peterson had been waiting months for this. Ever since Peterson, founder of theĀ Utah Mountain Lion Conservation, noticed a female and maleĀ mountain lionĀ roaming the area together, she’d been checking theĀ trail camerasĀ in the Utah wilderness, hoping to see someone small.

mountain lion

Finally, this month, Peterson checked the footage and there they were ā€” three baby mountain lions roaming through the snow with their mom.

ā€œI was over-the-moon excited!ā€ Peterson told The Dodo.

mountain lion and kitten

Peterson quickly posted the thrilling footage to Facebook.

ā€œYesterday’s camera check came with a delightful surprise,ā€ she wrote in the post.

The Utah Division of Wildlife ResourcesĀ estimates that there are about 2,500 mountain lions in Utah. However, determining an exact number of mountain lions is difficult, given that the cats are very elusive. According to Peterson, hunting in the region has increased in recent years, further damaging mountain lion numbers. Kitten survival rates are generally quite low, so it was especially exciting to see three healthy babies on the cam.

ā€œIt was truly a gift!ā€ Peterson said.

mountain lion and kitten
FACEBOOK/DENISE M. PETERSON

Peterson noted that these babies will stay with their mother for around 18 months to two years. During this time, the mother will teach her kittens important skills, like hunting, stalking, caching, prey selection, what areas to avoid and more. According to theĀ Mountain Lion Foundation, these big cats are ā€œecological engineers,ā€ meaning their behavior helps keep the larger ecosystem functioning, ultimately aiding in the fight against climate change.

In the trail camera footage, you can watch as the baby mountain lions dutifully follow their mother wherever she goes. For this little family, sticking together is what matters most.

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