I spy a bobcat blurring brookside, loping contentedly across a path padded with pine needles. Do you see what I see? S/he’s pretty well camouflaged in the range of rusty hues filling the majority of this image. But look for the lean, well muscled legs, the bobbed tail, and the pointy ears with a spray of white fur behind and below each tuft. Now do you see the bobcat blurring up the trail from left to right, ascending just swiftly enough to challenge the wildlife camera’s focus.
It’s been a while since we’ve observed a bobcat blurring or otherwise, so this hind quarter, fleeting glance will have to do for now. From what I can see, she’s (yes, I’m committing, perhaps erroneously, but she strikes me a lithe and feminine!) a slender but healthy wild cat patrolling her territory, wayfaring the wildway, perhaps pursuing a mate, or perhaps just hunting for lunch. Perhaps all of the above…
We’re fortunate to share Rosslyn’s fields and forests with so many wild neighbors, and this is due in no small part to the conscientious efforts of our close friend and Rosslyn’s wildlife steward, John Davis (@wildwaystrekker), who patrols these acres year round monitoring the health and wellbeing of the the flora and fauna. I share this post today in part as a retrospective on recent bobcat sightings, but foremost to reiterate our gratitude to John for his gentle vigilance and guidance. His collaboration has catalyzed our hopes of rewilding much of Rosslyn’s land, ensuring a welcoming and safe wildlife sanctuary not only for bobcats, but for all of the wild neighbors that enrich our North Country life.
And, with respect to the bobcat blurring image above, we thank you, John, for checking the wildlife cameras on your final day of freedom before entering hip replacement surgery. Certainly you have more pressing priorities, but you took the time and made the labored effort (given the condition of your hip) to hike deep in to Rosslyn’s backland to check cameras. Thank you! May your recovery be swift and 100% successful.
Backward Review of Bobcats Past
Given the recent laps in bobcat (Lynx rufus) images, I’d like to gather some previous fortunate captures into a quick retrospective.
On January 13, 2016 I shared a bobcat sighting in Rosslyn’s forested backland, and then a week later shared a Chimney Point bobcat sighting on the Essex on Lake Champlain community blog. Roughly a year later, in the winter of 2017, I shared more bobcat images from one of our trail cameras.
About that time I shared another post on the Essex blog that has mysterious vanished, a bit like our wild feline neighbors who allow us but a fleeting glimpse — and then only if we’re exceptionally fortunately — before dissolving into their immediate surroundings. What does remain from that blog post is a poetic pull that I excerpted elsewhere.
Crepuscular is a cool (but decidedly un-onomatopoetic) word for the gloaming. Twilight. Cocktail hour… And this, neighbors, might have something to do with the bobcat’s invisibility. Although cocktail hour also seems to be the most oft reported Champy sightings, so maybe my logic is off! Maybe the peripatetic… behavior of Lynx rufus is a more likely explanation for infrequent sightings. Always on the move. Sly. Stealthy. (Source: Lynx rufus (Bobcat) Sighting in Essex)
Perhaps it’s the bobcat’s wandering ways that accounts for the fine reward when we’re actually able to set eyes upon this miniature housing of the mountain lion.
In March of 2016 I encouraged John to amplify our understanding of Lynx rufus, and he obliged with a pair of posts on the Essex blog that are well worth a read. Here’s a compelling introduction to the first post.
Imagine your housecat at her finest, add fifteen pounds of muscle and brain, make her even more symmetrical and athletic, shorten her tail, enhance her beauty, and you have the basic image of a Bobcat. — John Davis (Source: Lynx rufus: Our Resilient Bobcat)
John offered a more concerned perspective and context in his second post.
Many of the once great wildcats of North America have been persecuted to extinction or have had their numbers dramatically decreased. In my previous post, “Lynx rufus: Our Resilient Bobcat,” I explained how the Bobcat has persevered in our region; however, some are pushing to begin or extend killing seasons on this predator who plays an important role in the wild. — John Davis (Source: Why Bobcats Should Be Protected)
Now’s a perfect point to abbreviate this post, but to balance the bobcat blurring above, I’ll remind you of a few other recent wildlife photos that I’ve shared on Instagram over the last couple of years. Enjoy these majestic cats, starting with this March 3, 2021 post.
It’s hard not to see a big of a tiger in that robust cat. Here’s another image that I shared on March 14, 2021.
Earlier this year, on February 19, 2022, this sturdy bobcat made a few appearances.
And the next set of images that I posted on February 23, 2022 appears to show a different bobcat.
One small takeaway from this series of bobcat images captured in Rosslyn’s fields and forests is that the best bobcat images are captured when the environment is snowy. Perhaps the cameras trigger better? Certainly the cats’ coats stand out better when photographed against a snowy backdrop. And this, of course, is good news as we head into snowier and snowier months along the Adirondack Coast. I will hope to have some new images to share with you soon.