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Local woman working to help community members coexist with cougars in San Luis Obispo

Posted at 6:42 PM, Jan 06, 2023
and last updated 2023-01-06 22:53:01-05

Over the last couple of months, multiple mountain lion sightings have been reported in the City of San Luis Obispo.

For San Luis Obispo resident, Jerri Clemens, protecting wildlife is a passion she's had for over 30 years.

“I’ve always heard this saying, we need to start changing our own behavior in our own backyard and within," Clemens said.

Her love for wildlife has inspired her to take action in her hometown.

“I thought to myself, we’ve got to get the word out," Clemens said.

She teamed up with "Cougar Conservancy" and California Fish and Wildlife to host a meeting Thursday night aimed at providing resources and information about living with mountain lions.

“I just wanted to do something for our community as a preventive measure. We are a community that loves to be outside, so the better informed we are, the safer we’ll be and the animal will be safe as well," Clemens said.

“That’s the goal with these meetings is to provide folks with information and they should do what is best for them and their families and based on their property to integrate our suggestions as it fits with their lifestyle," said Korinna Domingo, founder and director of Cougar Conservancy.

"Cougar Conservancy" is a nonprofit based in Los Angeles with the mission to reduce human/wildlife conflict and conserve cougar populations throughout the state.

“A lot of our work is about prevention. We want to prevent negative interactions with wildlife from occurring," Domingo explained.

“It makes us nervous having mountain lions but we’re in their habitat and they’re next to us so we have to find ways to be together and to be safe," said San Luis Obispo resident Rob Miller.

Clemens said her job isn’t done. She hopes to continue to work with local agencies to continue advocating for wildlife.

The techniques discussed at the event included how to reduce risk to people, pets, and livestock within mountain lion habitats.

California Fish and Wildlife told KSBY their last report was of a mountain lion seen on camera in San Luis Obispo on December 23.

To access a recorded version of the meeting, you can visit this link.