Bobcats are a member of the Lynx family, and their common name refers to their stubby, short “bobbed” tails. Males can weigh up to 40 pounds (average 25 pounds,) and females can weigh up to 33 pounds (average 20 pounds.) Both male and female bobcats have black-tipped, pointed ears, with short, black tufts of fur, often tipped in white. Bobcat populations are high in some desert regions, and low in others.
In desert regions, bobcats have light-colored coats, which allows them to remain hidden in plain sight. They are normally active from three hours before sunset until midnight, and again from before dawn until three hours after sunrise. Each night, bobcats move from 2 to 7 miles along an established route, but sometimes much further.
Their behavior may vary seasonally, as bobcats become more active during daylight hours during fall and winter, because prey is more active during daylight hours when temperatures are cold. They are tough animals, and can go extended periods of time without eating, but take full advantage when prey is plentiful.
Conflicts between bobcats and humans arise when livestock (sheep, goats and similar sized animals) are attacked. They’ll also take poultry and domestic pets.
Bobcats are protected by several laws, and have a strict hunting season in California.
A bobcat may be taken by a homeowner or tenant who has obtained a depredation permit from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife if livestock, poultry, or pets have been harmed or killed. Like mountain lions, bobcats can be difficult to see. We are able to assist you with trapping a bobcat, should you be able to obtain a depredation permit. As of November 20, 2015, bobcats may no longer be trapped in California, unless under the exceptions above.
Please click here for information regarding Depredation Permits