Professional Bobcat Control & Bobcat Removal in North Alabama and Southern Middle Tennessee
Tennessee Valley Wildlife Control is a local, family owned company with offices in both Franklin County and Lincoln County TN.
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Bobcats are very secretive, solitary, and seldom seen by people in the wild. Bobcats are active during the day, but prefer to be crepuscular or nocturnal in habitats where they exist. Bobcats tend to travel well-worn animal trails, logging roads, and other paths. They use their acute vision and hearing for locating enemies and prey. Bobcats do not form lasting pair bonds. Mating can occur between most adult animals. In Tennessee, female bobcats reach sexual maturity within their first year but males are not sexually mature until their second year. Nationwide, breeding can occur from January to June. In Tennessee, breeding typically begins in February and the first estrus cycle in mid- March.
The gestation period in bobcats ranges from 50 to 70 days, averaging 62 days. Nationwide, young are born from March to July, with litters as late as October. The breeding season may be affected by latitude, altitude, and longitude, as well as by characteristics of each bobcat population. In Tennessee, births peak mid-May to mid-June and can occur as late as August or September. These late litters may be from recycling or late-cycling females, probably yearlings. In Tennessee, births may peak as early as March. Bobcats weigh about 2/3 pound at birth. Litters contain from 2 to 4 kittens. Kittens nurse for about 60 days and may accompany their mother through their first winter.
Variations in diet occur between male, female, young, and adult bobcats. Adult male bobcats have been shown to feed on mainly larger prey such as rabbits sheep, poultry, goats, game birds, turkey, deer, calves, cats and dogs. Adult female bobcats feed mainly on smaller prey. About 70% of the female’s diet consists of prey such as rabbits, quail, mice, rats, and squirrel. Juvenile bobcats have also been shown to feed mainly on prey similar to that of the female bobcats, this is said to be due to the lack of strength and experience to take down larger prey. Bobcats display different hunting behaviors depending on their target prey. When hunting highly mobile prey such as rabbits, bobcats will frequently sit still on elevated perches, and wait for the prey to approach. Conversely, bobcats hunting stationary prey such as bedded deer will increase their movements. When searching for prey, bobcats attempt to surprise their prey by approaching hills and knolls slowly and peering over the top. Once a potential prey item has been identified, bobcats stalk the prey in an attempt to get close enough to pounce. During the stalk, bobcats use all available cover to remain hidden from their prey and frequently pause, remaining perfectly still, as they wait for the prey to resume normal activities or turn away before continuing. Once a bobcat gets close enough or is spotted by the prey, they dash towards the prey, frequently hurdling obstacles several meters high in the course of the pursuit. Whether successful or not, chases tend to end rather quickly, a result of the limited lung capacity of bobcats. Once captured, bobcats typically dispatch large prey items by biting their throat and occluding their windpipe or severing their carotid artery. Smaller prey is killed via bite to the nape, resulting in crushed or separated vertebrae.