Mufasa, an elderly mountain lion who spent 20 years chained up in the back of a circus pick-up truck, has been rescued by Animal Defenders International (ADI). He will live out the rest of his life at the Taricaya Ecological Reserve in the Amazon forest.
According to ADI President Jan Creamer, “Mufasa’s story symbolizes the suffering we have ended. He was kept for years in chains in a truck, sleeping on metal, barely able to move. An unbearable torture. Now, in his twilight years, I hope people will help us give him back the life the circus stole from him.”
Peter Day, photographer for the Victorville Press, captured this amazing scene in California’s Lucerne Valley on September 29.
Jose Ruiz, who lives across from the 35-foot utility pole, said he thought the mountain lion got spooked by a noisy group of kids getting off the school bus. The big cat stayed perched atop the pole into the night.
To learn more about mountain lions (also known as cougars, pumas, or panthers), visit our mountain lion facts article.
Meet our featured animal: the cougar!
Cougars are also referred to as pumas, mountain lions or panthers. Here are five fun facts about them:
- Unlike other big cats, the cougar cannot roar. Instead, the large feline purrs like a house cat.
- The cougar is the second largest cat in North America.
- Cougars can leap over 6 m (20 ft.).
During most of their lives, cougars are solitary creatures. They only interact with one another to mate.
For the most part, the cougar has no natural enemies and sits atop the food chain.
Did you know that Atlantic puffins live out in the open sea most of the time and only come to land to breed for a few months a year? Also, although puffins resemble penguins in their black and white markings, they are not related to penguins at all. In stark contrast to penguins, Atlantic puffins are excellent fliers and can reach speeds up to 88 km/h (55mph)!
Learn more facts about Atlantic puffins »
Cougar (Mountain Lion)
The cougar, also commonly called the mountain lion, puma, and panther, is the largest cat in North America. However, unlike other big cats such as lions and tigers, the cougar cannot roar and instead purrs like a house cat. Furthermore, with a slender body and round head with pointed ears, the cougar’s body shape closely resembles that of a house cat, only larger.
Learn more facts about cougars »