S.MÉJEAN-PINNEY

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KCET / Lost LA: California’s Lost Grizzly

A look at the demise of the grizzly bear in Southern California, an animal once revered by indigenous peoples but later targeted by Europeans as a threat to safety and security.
They once ruled most of California, mountains of tooth, claw, and tawny fur that changed the landscape just by living there. Now they exist only on the state flag. The California grizzly, which once roamed the state’s open hills and numbered in the tens of thousands, was finally exterminated in 1924, when the last known grizzly was shot in Tulare County.
Now, a wildlife advocacy group is getting press for a campaign to bring California’s top carnivore back, or at least to get the state’s government to take the idea seriously. And it’s all part of a broader vision of helping grizzly populations recover across the west.
In a public petition campaign, the Center for Biological Diversity is asking fans of the big bear to urge the California Fish and Game Commission to explore options for bringing the grizzly back to the Golden State. If the Commission decides to heed the petition, that would likely mean ordering the California Department of Fish and Wildlife to conduct a study on the feasibility of reintroducing the grizzly to California.

Watch it on KCET | LOST LA

CREDIT: Producer and Co-Editor