by Jeff Murray, StarGazette, link to original post & to 2 PHOTOS
Ever since I started hunting almost 39 years ago, I’ve spent countless hours in the woods and fields. In all that time, I’ve never seen a bobcat in person.
Few people do, but bobcats are starting to show up more regularly these days — on trail cameras.
Kevin Wasson of Thornapple Drive in Elmira put up a trail cam on his property a month or so ago and was surprised when he caught a bobcat sauntering down a trail. “I have seen fox, turkeys and grouse in the woods, and I have seen bear and a fisher in my backyard,” Wasson said. “But I have never seen any type of cat. I had never even considered it. So I was shocked.”
Wasson reported the sighting to Scott Smith, a DEC wildlife biologist based in Bath, who wasn’t surprised at all. Bobcats are becoming more common in the Southern Tier, as an expanding population spills over from northern Pennsylvania, Smith said.
They still aren’t often seen, because their elusive behavior and coloration help them blend well into their surroundings. But modern technology is changing that. “As more and more folks use game cameras, quality bobcat reports have increased,” Smith said. “As they say, a picture is worth a thousand words. So I am especially interested in observations with photo proof.”
Smith asks that anyone who has spotted a bobcat, fisher or river otter — and especially one with photographic evidence — email him at email@example.com, or firstname.lastname@example.org.