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National Wildlife Federation Releases New Book Celebrating Wildlife Success Stories

Including Tales of Hollywood’s P-22 Mountain Lion Adventures, the Journey of OR-7 Wolf’s Return to California and the Facebook Foxes living in Silicon Valley

Los Angeles, CA - In partnership with Heyday Books, the National Wildlife Federation has released When Mountain Lions Are Neighbors: People And Wildlife Working It Out In California, a new book of stories celebrating people and wildlife thriving together—sometimes in the most unlikely of places. Written by National Wildlife Federation’s California Director, Beth Pratt-Bergstrom, the new release is an entertaining read of true tales about people and wildlife championing a new paradigm for conservation: coexistence.

Did you know that a mountain lion, known as P-22, lives in the middle of Los Angeles, that on the Facebook campus in Silicon Valley, Mark Zuckerberg and his staff have provided a home for an endearing family of wild gray foxes, or that wolves have returned to California after a ninety-year absence, led by the remarkable journey of the wolf OR-7? The book shares a few dozen stories highlighting the work of individuals, groups, organizations and communities throughout California that help foster place-based connections for wildlife to thrive alongside people, even in highly urbanized areas. For example, the Pollinator Posse, an all-volunteer group based in Oakland, California, has saved thousands of monarch butterflies and reinvigorated their population with simple milkweed plantings and education in the Bay Area. Other stories that Beth writes about include rice farmers sharing their fields with Sandhill Cranes, how California's endangered desert tortoises are getting some much needed protection from a formidable ally: the United States Marines Corps, and how park staff and millions of visitors rallied to keep Yosemite’s famed bears wild.

“The truth is that we can each play an important role in ensuring a bright future for wildlife, no matter where we live, and these California stories serve as examples of how we can each take action, from anywhere across our country and around the world,” shares Collin O’Mara, President, CEO, National Wildlife Federation

Many do not realize that California and its many successful wildlife stories serve as a great example in understanding ways that people can conserve and better co-exist with wildlife that can serve as a model worldwide. Wildlife conservation has entered a new age, forcing those who work to protect and preserve wild things to reconsider their approach. This “new nature” is personal, urban, social, and diverse, and the unique place that is California has given birth to it.

California houses the largest number of national parks in the lower forty-eight states and also contains some of the largest cities in the country—both of which are essential to conservation efforts. For over 80 years, the National Wildlife Federation has worked to unite all people around a shared love of nature and wildlife by creating a welcoming community representative of all Americans, and the organization’s legacy in conservation has been far-reaching throughout its history. This new release is another example of this leadership.

“When the number-one threat to wildlife worldwide is loss of habitat, we can no longer think of our cities or towns or neighborhoods, or even our backyards, as exempt from the natural world—or as off-limits to wildlife. We need to expand our view and realize that our shared spaces are as essential to conservation as our traditional protected lands. We need to create a new model of suburban and urban wildlife refugia,” says Pratt-Bergstrom.

When Mountain Lions Are Neighbors is a 240-page paperback with full-color photographs, and will be distributed to bookstores, libraries, museums, parks, and other retail locations on August 1st. It will also be sold on Amazon.com and on the National Wildlife Federation’s website, retailing for $18 USD.

The author receives no royalties from this book.

Proceeds will benefit the National Wildlife Federation’s conservation work in California.

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