Bobcat Paw Print


The bobcat is a medium sized member of the cat family. The bobcat has a short, broad face, framed with a fur ruff, very long legs, short bobbed tail, and coat colors range from yellowish to reddish brown, streaked and spotted with black. The ears are black, sporting a center white or grey spot. Adult weight ranges from 10 to 40 pounds. Their lifespan in the wild may average 10 to 12 years.

Like your pet cat, bobcats are both diurnal and nocturnal, preferring to hunt around sunrise and sunset. Like other members of the cat family, bobcats probably nap a lot. They prefer to live in densely wooded areas, well away from humans and their developments. Dens can be thickets of grasses and underbrush, hollow logs, caves - areas that provide solitude and shelter. Bobcats are basically loners and do not hang out in groups. Mom has sole responsibility for raising her young. Communication sounds range from clicks, yowls, purrs, growls,  hiss and spit. Like other cats, bobcats are very curious, and very agile tree climbers and jumpers.

Food Preference:

Bobcats are predominately carnivores. They eat mice, rats, rabbits, and other small animals and birds. They are strong enough to take down small deer. Sometimes they may enjoy nibbling some grasses and other vegetation.

Geographic Range:

Bobcats may be found in the southern most part of Canada through the US (sparse in North-Central States) into Mexico. In Missouri, they mostly live in the Ozarks and northern, wooded counties and there are very few scattered along the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers.


Bobcat enemies are humans and dogs, ticks, fleas, parasitic worms, distemper and rabies. Owls, coyotes and foxes may take young kittens.

Bobcat Kitten
Value to the Environment:

Bobcats are excellent predators and scavengers and help keep the rodent population in check, as well as help maintain the balance of life in the forests. Unfortunately, as more and more habitat is taken by humans, bobcats are being driven out. They do not adapt to human activity the way other animals have.