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Mountain Lion Found Shot on Bishop Reservation

screen shot 2019 08 13 at 12.19.53 pmLate last week, the Bishop Tribal Council formally requested the assistance from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) in helping to remedy the recent mountain lion sightings on the Bishop Paiute Reservation.

Because CDFW is a State agency and the Tribe is on Federal land, a formal request was required to authorize CDFW to come onto the Bishop Paiute Reservation.

On Monday August 2nd, after a call from a Bishop City resident, CDFW notified the Bishop Paiute Tribe of the possible location of a deceased mountain lion. During an extensive search, CDFW and Bishop Tribal Police located the remains of a deceased mountain lion on the eastern edge of the Bishop Reservation. CDFW officials determined the mountain lion, had in fact, been tagged by the Department years earlier and was about 16 years old. Based on the evidence, the mountain lion’s cause of death was by single gunshot. It’s believed the mountain lion was shot elsewhere and succumbed to its wound on the reservation.

Once CDFW determined there was no need to remove the carcass or take samples, they deferred to the Tribe to handle any proceedings due to its location. After a blessing, being smudged and a tobacco offering, the mountain lion was laid to rest.

It’s important to remember that mountain lions and other predators have been a part of the Owens Valley ecosystem for millennia. Occasional sightings of them are part of life in a rural setting and should not necessarily be cause for alarm. Also, important to know, relocation of wildlife doesn’t necessarily prevent wildlife from returning to the same area where it was relocated from. Recently, a bear breaking into homes in Lee Vining was relocated to the Markleeville area and two days later, it was spotted back in Lee Vining.

The Bishop Tribal Council appreciates the tribal community for their efforts informing the Tribal Council, Bishop Tribal Police, Bishop Paiute Tribe Public Works, Community Development Department staff, Tribal Administration, Brian Poncho for the blessing and would like to thank the California Department of Fish and Wildlife for their collaboration with the Council.

The Bishop Paiute Tribe is a federally recognized Indian Tribe located on its 879-acre Bishop Paiute Reservation in Inyo County, California. The Reservation was formed under Congressional Act 5299, P.L. No. 43 of April 20, 1937. The Tribe is committed to the well-being of its people. For more information, please contact the Bishop Paiute Tribe at (760) 873-3584.

(From Bishop Paiute Tribe)

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