Bites at Animal Planet

Fatal Attractions

14 Aug

Rare Mountain Lion Dies in Tragic Human Encounter

Dodo Circular

(Guest post by Sarah V Schweig from

A mountain lion famous for his wide and adventurous wanderings in and around the Santa Monica Mountains was struck on 5 Freeway in California.

In April, wildlife ecologists at the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area rejoiced when they saw that the mountain lion, called P-32, successfully crossed another freeway without being harmed, along with his sister, P-33.

The pair was made famous through stunning photographs of them with their mom, posted to the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area Facebook page earlier this year.

P-32, who had been tracked since he was four weeks old, was only 21 months old at the time of his death, between 4 and 6 a.m. Monday morning, according to the National Park Service's release. The statement notes that since the study and tracking of mountain lions in the area began back in 2002, only one male mountain lion born in the Santa Monica Mountains has survived into adulthood.

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23 Jul

Bison Selfies Are A Bad Idea, One Woman Learns The Hard Way

Dodo Circular

(Guest post by Sarah V Schweig from

A Mississippi woman touring Yellowstone National Park with her family got a little carried away with the rampant majesty of the park's wildlife.

Spotting an especially photogenic bison during a hike on Tuesday, the 43-year-old woman and her daughter approached and stood mere feet from the handsome beast. Then, they turned their backs to pose for a selfie.

"They heard the bison's footsteps moving toward them and started to run," theNational Park Service said in a statement, "but the bison caught the mother on the right side, lifted her up and tossed her with its head."

The woman's father sprung to action, covering her until the bison moved away. After a trip to the Old Faithful Clinic, the woman was lucky: Her injuries were minor.

"The family said they read the warnings in both the park literature and the signage, but saw other people close to the bison, so they thought it would be OK," said Colleen Rawlings, Old Faithful District Ranger. "People need to recognize that Yellowstone wildlife is wild, even though they seem docile. This woman was lucky that her injuries were not more severe."


A photo posted by sarah hope valentine (@shval406) on Jan 20, 2015 at 9:49pm PST

Wild bison have called the region home since prehistoric times and almost 5,000 live there now. So far this summer, there have been five people injured after close encounters with bison in Yellowstone. "Bison can run three times faster than humans can sprint," Yellowstone reminded visitors.

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5 Sep

Missing Cobra Found In California Neighborhood

The missing albino monocled cobra (Photo Credit: The County of Los Angeles Department of Animal Care and Control)

Families and their pets are safe to go outside after a missing cobra was found in the Los Angeles area.

Yesterday, the County of Los Angeles Department of Animal Care and Control announced it found a loose albino monocle cobra days after it disappeared in Thousand Oaks, CA. Before the cobra disappeared, it reportedly attacked a dog, according to the Associated Press.

California prohibits private ownership of cobras, except for educational and scientific purposes, which then would require a permit. Authorities believe the cobra was kept as someone's pet. 

While the species isn’t known to be aggressive, it is venomous and will defend itself if cornered. Fortunately, the dog the cobra attacked suffered minor injuries.  

The monocle cobra can grow up to 4 feet long and is more active in the morning and evening when the temperature is cooler, according to authorities. The cobra was found just after 3pm, according to the AP.  

Want to learn more about cobras? Take a look at some videos online, and learn about the life or death situation one man faced with his:

6 Aug

Escaped African Rock Python Kills Two Boys


African Rock Python, Python sebae, eating an Impala, Samburu Nature Reserve, Kenya. Credit: Werner Bollman/Getty Images

In a terribly sad story that only reinforces the danger of owning a large snake as a pet, two young boys were killed after an African rock python is believed to have escaped from the pet store beneath what is believed to be their home.

For more details on the story, turn to this Treehugger article.

To see more video, head over to Fatal Attractions.

15 Jan

Get Ready: Fatal Attractions Returns Friday!


Fatal Attractions, which tells the intense, heart-wrenching true stories of people who choose to live with deadly "pets" — wild animals that are capable of catastrophic injury and even death, returns this Friday at 10PM E/P.

The premiere episodes tells the story of Sam Mazzola's Ohio farm where he kept exotic animals, whom he charged people to wrestle with in an effort to gain attention and financial rewards. After the death of a young worker, darker truths about Mazzola's lifestyle are brought to light.

Tune in this Friday at 10PM E/P to see the full episode and uncover another fatal attraction.

See an earlier clip from Fatal Attractions here:

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