A mother’s love is a powerful thing, especially in the animal kingdom. Baby animals rely on their mothers for survival, and a mama animal will always put her babies above herself
That was the heartbreaking story for one mountain lion family, as an injured mother used her last moments to reach her babies. But now, her orphaned cubs are getting the love and care they need.
A few months ago, a mother mountain lion was struck by a car and critically injured, according to the Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center. She then used her last bit of strength to get back to her baby boys.
The mother died as she reached them, but this last act ended up saving the cubs’ lives: she was wearing a tracking collar placed on her as part of a study through the Arizona Game & Fish Department. Officials were able to use the location to rescue her orphaned cubs.
The cubs were “saved by their mother’s love in her last living moments,” Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center wrote.
Young cubs rely on their mothers for survival: at only a few weeks old, the two cubs wouldn’t survive on their own and couldn’t be raised by another parent in the wild. They needed human care in order to live.
“Currently, mountain lions are not releasable animals,” the wildlife center explained. “They need to remain with their mother for 18 months to learn to fear people, hunt for their food, and care for themselves. Without a real wild mother, baby lions don’t learn these critical skills for survival.”
So, the Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center, located in Scottsdale, Arizona, took them in; they will now spend their lives in the care of the sanctuary. Southwest Wildlife is a nonprofit animal rescue accredited by the American Sanctuary Association; they are the only sanctuary in Arizona capable of caring for mountain lions.
“Although we are heartbroken to know these babies don’t get to grow up with their momma, we are thrilled to have them safe, healthy & thriving with us at Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center,” they wrote on Facebook.
The conservation center is now holding a fundraiser and naming contest. With a donation starting at $5, people can choose from three pairs of names: Zion & Bryce, Alpine & Apache or Echo & Dash.
It’s heartbreaking that these cubs lost their mother, but her love led to them being found and rescued and now they will have a great new life at the sanctuary.
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