On Monday, June 9, someone stole the mountain lion fur from this exhibit, taking away the chance for others to learn about this priceless pelt.
Daniel Williford, a Park Interpreter at Henry Cowell, described the pelt as a tan colored and well-worn fur that had a hole through the bottom of the neck area, along with a partially broken-off tail.
“The hole right below the neck looks like a bullet has gone through it,” said Williford.
According to Williford, mountain lion pelts are very hard to obtain and they require a tremendous amount of paperwork. Replacing this pelt will not be an easy task for the Visitor Center, he said.
Williford said that they are simply concerned with getting the pelt back in its original condition, so if it is found, one can simply go back to the Visitor Center and hand it in to one of the docents, or members working at the front desk.
“The loss of this pelt takes away from visitors’ experience here,” said Williford. “It allowed for people to learn about and touch a mountain lion in a safe way.”
The Henry Cowell Visitor Center has many exhibits to teach the public about the wildlife, habitats, and nature in the San Lorenzo Valley. Each exhibit offers the public a chance to experience and learn about Henry Cowell State Park, and now it won’t be the same due to this loss.
“It’s disappointing that the Visitor Center has become a place of crime,” said Williford.
If someone has any information regarding the theft of the pelt they can contact Daniel Williford by phone at (831) 335-7077, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.