Animal Conservation

Bobcat caught in a camera trap

  • Every month, Mongabay brings you a new episode of Candid Animal Cam, our show featuring animals captured in camera traps around the world and hosted by Romi Castagnino, our writer and conservation scientist.

Camera traps bring you closer to the secret natural world and are an important conservation tool for studying wildlife. This month, we meet the cat along with North America’s largest lineup of felines – the bobcat.

Bobcats (Lynx rufus) are nocturnal, solitary animals about twice the size of a domestic cat. They are easily recognized by the fur ruffles around the face and bushy ears similar to those of their larger relative, the Canadian lynx. The bobcat lives from southern Canada to Mexico in many habitats including forests, semi-deserts, mountains, and scrub, but people rarely see it due to its secretive nature.

Like all felines, bobcats have excellent eyesight, hearing, and a well-developed sense of smell that helps them locate their prey. Their long and powerful hind legs allow them to jump up to 3 meters long to pounce on their prey. Bobcats live for up to 12 years in the wild. The species is classified as Least Concern because it is abundant and has a wide range. However, local threats such as habitat loss, hunting for the fur trade, and disease transmission can present challenges for long-term persistence in some areas. Watch the video to learn more about this species!

Special thanks to research biologist Sean M. McHugh. You can follow him on Instagram at @seanmchughwildlife.

Banner image of a lynx. photo by Elaine Malott via Flickr (CC BY-ND 2.0)

Romi Castagnano is Mongabay’s bilingual writer. Find it on Twitter and Instagram: @romi_castagnano

Animal behavior, Animals, Biodiversity, Camera trap, Cats, Conservation, Conservation technology, Environment, Green, Happy environment, Mammals, Fauna, Wildlife conservation