The Santa Barbara Wildlife Care Network will host its lecture series Wild Talks, featuring conservation leader Beth Pratt, 6-7 p.m. Monday, July 31 at The New Vic Theater in Santa Barbara.

Pratt, an author, wildlife advocate and regional executive director of the National Wildlife Federation, will talk about The Life and Legacy of P-22.

Her address will focus on the memory and wider importance of P-22, the famous mountain lion known for being the only mountain lion ever to cross both the 405 and 101 freeways in Los Angeles, and to survive for years in Griffith Park.

P-22 died in 2022, but Pratt has led the #SaveLACougars campaign in his memory. The campaign has successfully led to the construction of the Wallis Annenberg Wildlife Crossing, a visionary project that will connect a crucial wildlife corridor, preserve biodiversity, and save a local population of mountain lions from extinction.

The crossing will be the world’s largest, the first of its kind in California, and a global model for urban wildlife conservation.
Some of Pratt’s talking points will be:

• Pratt will discuss some of the community roadblocks that hindered the Wildlife Crossing project, and why Santa Barbara should be willing to undertake similar initiatives for local wildlife populations. 
• What is the future of the relationship between local human and wildlife populations, especially when viewed through a lens of shifting behaviors of both populations due to climate change? 
• Pratt will delve into the urgent need for wildlife protection and the remarkable impact one resilient creature can have on an entire community.
In her December 2022 eulogy for P-22, Pratt wrote that the mountain lion “inspired millions of people to see wildlife as their neighbors. He made us more human, made us connect more to that wild place in ourselves. We are part of nature and he reminded us of that. He showed people around the world that we need to ensure our roads, highways, and communities are better and safer when people and wildlife can freely travel to find food, shelter, and families. The Wallis Annenberg Wildlife Crossing would not have been possible without P-22, but the most fitting memorial to P-22 will be how we carry his story forward in the work ahead.”