Thursday, March 5, 2015

Bobcat Kill

We see bobcats in our trail cameras often, but they don't look big enough to bring down a deer, the way the books say they can. But while Johnny was in California last month, one of my walks in the woods found a dead deer, half hidden under fallen logs and covered with leaves and mosses. Well, I didn't find it, our dog Shirley did and I looked to see what she was working on.

Wild cats, namely cougar and bobcats in our area, hide their kills that way, then come back and eat more later. I set up trail cameras by the kill to see which kind of cat it was. The deer looked to be a yearling.

A bobcat came during the night. Also feeding on the carcass occasionally in the next several days was the neighborhood dog we call a Wolf Dog, because it looks to be a cross between a wolf and a dog. Once our camera found that dog's sometime-companion, another neighbor dog: a black dog with a collar. It only came once and came alone. Every time I went down to check the camera cards, Shirley came with me and the camera caught her. She never stayed long, though. Neither did the neighbor dogs. The bobcat did, though, and moved the carcass once to another spot. The bobcat only came at night.

Here is Wolf Dog

The black dog...

 Shirley (after the carcass was mostly gone)...

I expected to see raccoons and opossums and who knows what else feeding on the carcass, but the only other creature I saw in the trail cameras was a mouse. And it came many times to eat something... maybe small insects or fly larvae? It was a very cute mouse with big ears and a long tail.

Six days later, nothing was left but a few small bones and scattered hair.

In the past, the only thing we have seen bobcats catch were rodents and rabbits. Now we know that bobcats, at least this one, can bring down a deer.

I'm glad we have livestock guardian dogs living with our livestock. Most of our goats are not nearly so big as this deer was.

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