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Saw a dead bobcat yesterday...

Old 11-08-19, 08:23 PM
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Saw a dead bobcat yesterday...

...up close & personal. 😮 No pics, lol, so it must not have "really" happened. 😉 This was a roadkill, so pics were not really appropriate for this corner of the internet.

But yeah, coming back North on route 60, from Phoenix to Wickenburg, there's a town called Morristown, and right before that is Morristown Wash. There's a longish uphill curve, with 2 lanes of traffic going North, past a desert wilderness type area. I was pushing the bike uphill, not really looking around much, and saw this bobcat's head, about a foot from my right foot, under the guardrail. 😳 It took me about 2 or 3 seconds to realize he must be dead, but for that 2 or 3 seconds, all I could do was stare at it, and wonder if it was going to bite me. 🤔😁

The funny thing was, his head wasn't really damaged, that I could see, he must have been struck on his body, by whatever vehicle got him. I had another weird 2 or 3 seconds, wondering if I should try skinning him, lol, but talked myself right out of that. 🙄😉
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Old 11-08-19, 09:15 PM
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Oh phew, I was afraid you'd seen one of these:
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Old 11-08-19, 10:05 PM
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Originally Posted by stardognine View Post
...up close & personal. 😮 No pics, lol, so it must not have "really" happened. 😉 This was a roadkill, so pics were not really appropriate for this corner of the internet.

But yeah, coming back North on route 60, from Phoenix to Wickenburg, there's a town called Morristown, and right before that is Morristown Wash. There's a longish uphill curve, with 2 lanes of traffic going North, past a desert wilderness type area. I was pushing the bike uphill, not really looking around much, and saw this bobcat's head, about a foot from my right foot, under the guardrail. 😳 It took me about 2 or 3 seconds to realize he must be dead, but for that 2 or 3 seconds, all I could do was stare at it, and wonder if it was going to bite me. 🤔😁

The funny thing was, his head wasn't really damaged, that I could see, he must have been struck on his body, by whatever vehicle got him. I had another weird 2 or 3 seconds, wondering if I should try skinning him, lol, but talked myself right out of that. 🙄😉
I saw a big groundhog get killed when a piece of gravel thrown by a car tire struck it in the head. It was just as if it'd been shot with a gun. It was dead instantly.

Cheers
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Old 11-08-19, 10:27 PM
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They're pretty rare. I count myself lucky to have seen one, spotted on a gravel road climbing to the Blue Ridge Parkway. He was ahead of me and I did not catch him.
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Old 11-09-19, 02:58 AM
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Originally Posted by stardognine View Post
... wondering if I should try skinning him, lol, but talked myself right out of that. 🙄😉
dude! ya shoulda! (*) would have made an awesome helmet cover!!

https://cn.bing.com/th?id=OIP.bbwblM...A&pid=Api&rs=1

(*) assuming it were a critter, and not that guy from police academy.....

Last edited by saddlesores; 11-09-19 at 03:01 AM.
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Old 11-09-19, 05:36 AM
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Bobcats are beautiful in the wild. Very cautious and rarely seen...I've been lucky enough to see one in the wild in my +50 years of messing around in the woods. Very cool.
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Old 11-09-19, 07:09 AM
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Originally Posted by Stormsedge View Post
Bobcats are beautiful in the wild. Very cautious and rarely seen...I've been lucky enough to see one in the wild in my +50 years of messing around in the woods. Very cool.
Yeah,beautiful, quite shy, and rarely seen. That said they are in every state in the lower 48 except Delaware and populations are generally stable or growing (only declining here in Florida). There is actually a pretty large US population. I have read that there are somewhere between approximately 2,000,000 and 3,500,000 individuals in the lower 48. It is hard to imagine there are that many out there given how few are seen.

I have been lucky enough to have gotten a very good look at two bobcats in the wild and had a glimpse at what I thought might be a couple others, but didn't get a good enough look to be sure.

Interestingly enough I have seen many black bears, but the black bear population is a fraction of the bobcat population in the US (I have seen estimates from ~300,000-~600,000 for the lower 48). It speaks to the shyness and stealth of the bobcat.

NOTE: The numbers I listed are approximate and from memory, I didn't bother to look them up again before posting this because you can find a kind of unsatisfying range of reported numbers and I think these were somewhat representative of the range when I did look at them. For those interested in actual facts it is easy to do some searching, but finding exact numbers that you can count on is another matter.
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Old 11-09-19, 02:28 PM
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Originally Posted by saddlesores View Post
dude! ya shoulda! (*) would have made an awesome helmet cover!!

https://cn.bing.com/th?id=OIP.bbwblM...A&pid=Api&rs=1

(*) assuming it were a critter, and not that guy from police academy.....
Ha, forgot all about that guy. 😁

I know mammals don't actually bleed, after they're dead, but I imagine it could still get pretty messy. Add in the fact that I've never skinned anything before, plus the fact that running water in Arizona is a bit of a luxury, and I think I made the right choice. 😉

I also saw a live bobcat once, when I was probably 7 or 8 years old. My older brother decided we should explore an old wooden garage, across the road from our place. We surprised a bobcat, and it took off out a big hole in the wall. Pretty trippy. 😁

But the worst part was, we also found an old hornet's nest, and we both got stung multiple times. 😩🤬

I never thought about it before, but it seems a little weird, that the hornets left the bobcat alone, apparently. 🤔 Obviously, the animals have different rules, for humans, than for other animals. 🙄😉
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Old 11-10-19, 01:06 AM
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I've seen live bob cats but never a dead one. One one of my final commutes (I retired) I saw a mountain lion. Running away from me.
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Old 11-15-19, 09:53 AM
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Originally Posted by enigmaT120 View Post
I've seen live bob cats but never a dead one. One one of my final commutes (I retired) I saw a mountain lion. Running away from me.
Are you in Arizona, by chance? I just looked up big cats in Arizona this morning, because I heard one around 4:00 this morning. I see both bobcats & pumas are "prevalent" throughout the state, and there are also jaguars, though not as common. 😲

Boy, I need to reconsider cowboy camping, the way I do so much. 🙄 I'm pretty lucky, in some ways, and take it for granted, I guess. 😉
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Old 11-15-19, 09:13 PM
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I'm in Western Oregon, east foothills of the coast range west of Salem.
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Old 11-15-19, 09:26 PM
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I saw an ocelot road kill, a year or so ago. Perfect condition, on the shoulder. The following day it was gone. Going on twenty years ago, a live one ran across the road in front of our pick-up, in southern Belize.
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Old 11-15-19, 09:37 PM
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Bobcats are amazing animals. A few years back elk hunting in MT our guide who was a full time guide/hunter. Anyways he had a pet bobcat. Seriously a pet. The thing was crazy cool Kept it in his house. Had a large cage with an indoor outdoor door and it was caged. He would let it roam about his house like a house cat.

It was super intimidating. it would let you pet it and what not. I wasn't a fan of it being on the loose when I was around that week but it was pretty mild. One time my step brother was playing with it (braver than I) and he was rubbing its belly and he wrapped his paws around my brothers arm. The harder he pulled his arm to get out the tighter the cat held. They are smaller in size buy HUGE in strength. The owner had to give him a "treat" to get him to stop "playing".

Still laugh about it to this day and still say it was pretty dumb to be messing with it in the first place.

We have them here in the black hills but a sighting in the wild is pretty rare. Mountain lion are seen pretty regular however, just as terrifying.
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Old 11-16-19, 09:24 AM
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Originally Posted by enigmaT120 View Post
I'm in Western Oregon, east foothills of the coast range west of Salem.
Aha, that's roughly where I saw a cougar, several years ago now. 🙂 I was riding North, from California to Washington, and taking a lunch break, in a little clearing in the woods. I felt like someone (?) was watching me, but didn't see anyone, lol. After a few minutes, I finally saw what must have been a youngish cougar, sneaking along close to the ground, kinda crouch-walking, and moving towards me. I didn't actually recognize it yet, and said to myself, "What the heck am I looking at?". About the time I said heck, he or she turned around and ran, REALLY fast. 😁

That's why I figured it was a young one, it was more play-hunting, than serious about getting me.

I'm not sure at all now, what I heard the other night, but I heard it again last night. I think. The night before last, I heard a really low growl, like a cat purring, but lower & louder. Last night, it was several garbage cans getting knocked over. That sounds more like black bears, which is actually more likely. 🤔

When I did a search earlier, I saw that black bears have been coming into Phoenix itself, in the last few years, as a result of the ongoing drought here. So that's my best guess, until I actually see some critter. 🤔

BTW, I'm currently in Chandler, one of the Southern neighborhoods of Phoenix, and this all happened in Tumbleweed Park, away from the business & residential areas a bit. So it could be either, or even both. 😲😉
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Old 11-19-19, 12:06 AM
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House cats will follow you around and watch you. Doesn't mean they are stalking you or anything, they're just curious. Bigger cats do the same thing.

I think if a mountain lion were stalking me to attack me I would never know it. They are better predators than I am.
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Old 11-19-19, 08:15 AM
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Originally Posted by stardognine View Post
When I did a search earlier, I saw that black bears have been coming into Phoenix itself, in the last few years, as a result of the ongoing drought here.
We have had two black bears come into Philly in the last 3-4 years, including one this year. (And those are only the ones that have been seen.) The first one made it through the city without getting darted or shot by a citizen after stopping in a very large, wooded area for a swim. The one spotted this year was finally darted after a few days of raiding dumpsters. He was taken up north and released.


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Old 11-19-19, 08:29 AM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
We have had two black bears come into Philly in the last 3-4 years, including one this year. (And those are only the ones that have been seen.) The first one made it through the city without getting darted or shot by a citizen after stopping in a very large, wooded area for a swim. The one spotted this year was finally darted after a few days of raiding dumpsters. He was taken up north and released.
Coincidentally there have been increasing reports of delinquent bears showing up here with funny accents.
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Old 11-19-19, 08:39 AM
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Originally Posted by djb View Post
Coincidentally there have been increasing reports of delinquent bears showing up here with funny accents.
I was actually surprised when I heard where they released him. It was in an area that's only about a 90 min. drive from the city that is popular with hikers during much of the year and where there is a sanctuary for migrating hawks that attracts a lot of visitors in the fall.
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Old 11-19-19, 08:47 AM
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All of us who do outdoor activities and are familiar with animal behavior know it's the whole "lose-lose" situation of wild animals becoming habituated to humans and specifically connecting humans with food.
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Old 11-19-19, 10:11 AM
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Originally Posted by djb View Post
All of us who do outdoor activities and are familiar with animal behavior know it's the whole "lose-lose" situation of wild animals becoming habituated to humans and specifically connecting humans with food.
Yeah, I'm gonna seriously look into a bear canister soon. I've heard & read about them, but never felt like I needed one before. I guess if you're gonna have a bear, you might as well keep it fresh. 🤔😁😉
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Old 11-19-19, 05:09 PM
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Originally Posted by stardognine View Post
Yeah, I'm gonna seriously look into a bear canister soon. I've heard & read about them, but never felt like I needed one before. I guess if you're gonna have a bear, you might as well keep it fresh. ������
Not sure what to make of that last sentence.

As far as bear canisters on tour... I own a couple canisters a Garcia and a Bear Vault BV450. I am generally not inclined to carry much food when touring. Even when backpacking I am loath to carry more than 4 days or so of food at a time these days. I am getting too old to be a pack mule. The BV450 fits in my 45 liter pack with my UL backpacking gear and holds 4 days of food. I am unlikely to ever use the Garcia other than for back country canoe camping or group backpacking.

I'd buy a smaller canister, but canisters can only be so small before bears can get their jaws around them. Also the Ursack looks interesting for touring if you want to carry something. Be aware of it's limitations and where it is and isn't allowed as a bear proof container. It probably doesn't meet the requirements of many of the national parks. Most of the ones that don't have bear lockers in the campgrounds though. Also the parks that don't allow it as a certified canister are likely to have rental canisters if backpacking.

I have always managed to get by without a canister when touring. Most of the places that had bear problems also had bear boxes. We did stay in a camp outside Yosemite that said to lock food and toiletries in your vehicle, but we managed to find someone who let us put our stuff in their car trunk overnight. I have hung food quite a few times as well.

That said I can see where I might consider taking the BV450 depending on the locale especially on a dirt or off road tour.
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Old 11-19-19, 06:45 PM
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Originally Posted by staehpj1 View Post
Not sure what to make of that last sentence.
Just a dumb joke, like if you were keeping a bear IN a canister, instead of keeping him OUT of it. 🙄😉 I've been told I have a weird sense of humor before, believe it or not. 😁

I try not to carry too much food either, but I probably carry what bears would prefer, like fresh fruit, cookies, candy, jerky and such. I really don't think I could out-wrestle a bear, so it's probably smarter, to use a canister, and hopefully not tempt him too much. 👍
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Old 11-19-19, 07:16 PM
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Originally Posted by thumpism View Post
They're pretty rare. I count myself lucky to have seen one, spotted on a gravel road climbing to the Blue Ridge Parkway. He was ahead of me and I did not catch him.

really .. I took a picture of one the other week on a gravel ride... he ran across the trail and just sat there in the shade of a tree. I was probably about 30 yards from him.
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Old 11-19-19, 08:03 PM
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A colleague got a pic of one in his backyard last year. I've seen two. One live, one dead, both while riding. And both in the last couple of years, although I've lived in the same place for almost 25 years.

And although I've seen wild hogs occasionally in other areas, I'd never seen one in the area where I live and ride until in the last few years when I've started to see them with some frequency. Including road kill a few hundreds yards from my driveway. I suspect extensive logging has changed habitat patterns.
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Old 11-20-19, 09:36 AM
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Well, we're getting some relief, from that drought I mentioned earlier. 👍 We got a heck of a loud thunderstorm last night, with plenty of lightning & rain. It's supposed to keep going through today & tomorrow, and there's a flash flood warning in effect.

I "almost" want to see a flash flood, but I'm not gonna complain too much, if I don't. 🤔😉
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