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Grizzly bears, black bears, wolves, coyotes, cougars/ mountain lions,bobcats, wolverines, lynx, foxes, fishers and martens are the suite of carnivores that originally inhabited North America after the Pleistocene extinctions. This site invites research, commentary, point/counterpoint on that suite of native animals (predator and prey) that inhabited The Americas circa 1500-at the initial point of European exploration and subsequent colonization. Landscape ecology, journal accounts of explorers and frontiersmen, genetic evaluations of museum animals, peer reviewed 20th and 21st century research on various aspects of our "Wild America" as well as subjective commentary from expert and layman alike. All of the above being revealed and discussed with the underlying goal of one day seeing our Continent rewilded.....Where big enough swaths of open space exist with connective corridors to other large forest, meadow, mountain, valley, prairie, desert and chaparral wildlands.....Thereby enabling all of our historic fauna, including man, to live in a sustainable and healthy environment. - Blogger Rick

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Sunday, November 27, 2011

For the first time in over 150 years, Ohio Wildlife Officials have confirmed a Bobcat sighting in the Northwestern part of the State..........."Bobs" have regained a foothold in the Southeastern(wooded and rolling hills) sections of Ohio over the last decade.... Their presence in the more "industrial farmland/Urban City in and around Cincinati and Cleveland has been rumor up until now..........Source populations in Indiana, Kentucky and West Virginia are the "feeders" that have begun breeding in the Buckeye State ............The bobcat is a state endangered species and is fully protected in Ohio.

Bobcat sighting verified for first time in NW Ohio


For the first time, a bobcat sighting was verified in Northwest Ohio last week.

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Division of Wildlife verified the first bobcat sighting in the region on Nov. 13.

A male bobcat was found caught in a trap southeast of Montpelier in Williams County. The bobcat was found dead in the trap, which was intended for raccoons. Until now, all other reports have been unverifiable.

"I'm sure it was as much a surprise to them as it was to us that he found it," said Scott Butterworth, Northwest Ohio ODNR, Division of Wildlife, of the trapping in Ohio's Northwestern most county.

While a growing number of bobcats have been sighted in Ohio since 2000, area residents can rest easy knowing their chances of crossing paths with one of the wild felines are extremely slim. First of all, Fostoria's scarce and scattered wooded habitat is not conducive to bobcats, which thrive in wide expanses of brush and woods, Butterworth said.

"Your chances of seeing a bald eagle are greater than seeing a bobcat so it gives you an idea of how rare they are," Butterworth said. "Your chances of seeing a black bear are greater than seeing a bobcat in the right spot, not that you're going to see black bears in Fostoria, either."

Bobcats are known to exist in Ohio's heavily wooded southernmost counties, but this is the first documentation of one of the wild cats in the Northwest region. The state-endangered animals were eliminated in 1850 but have had 464 sightings since 1970, most of them tallied after 2000, according to a press release. The small wild cats are believed to be moving in from neighboring states like Indiana, Kentucky and West Virginia, Butterworth said.

The shy felines are secretive in nature and prefer to hunt in the early evening hours and at sunrise. They generally keep to themselves and are not a threat to humans unless cornered or threatened, Butterworth said.

"They're usually very wary and you're lucky to even get a glimpse of one in the wild," Butterworth said.

Male bobcats are usually between 32 and 37 inches long and weigh about 28 pounds. Females range anywhere from 29 to 34 inches in length and weigh an average of 15 pounds.

A typical bobcat diet includes rabbits and rodents; although, their diet may also include things like: insects, fish, birds, and even occasionally a deer.

The bobcat is a state endangered species and is fully protected in Ohio.

The Ohioan who caught the bobcat in Montpelier was not penalized because it was an accidental trapping, Butterworth said.

Anyone who believes to have seen a bobcat should contact their county wildlife officer, or call the ODNR, Division of Wildlife at 1-800-WILDLIFE
Be sure to try and get a picture so the sighting can be properly documented, Butterworth said.

"It would be a real treat to see one. "¦ It's been over a hundred years since they've been in that part of Ohio so it's pretty spectacular for them to be back."


Anonymous said...

WOLVERINE SIGHTING IN SOUTHERN ASHLAND COUNTY OHIO? I SWEAR TO GOD I SAW A WOLVERINE SOUTH OF LOUDONVILLE ALONG STATE ROUTE 3 ON 6/25/14. I first caught sight with my peripheral vision and thought it was a large skunk, but the striping was along the side, and not the back. Not sure what the markings related to, I looked at both Badger and Wolverine photos, and sure enough, it HAD to be a wolverine! Heard they once found the carcass of one west of Loudonville near Mifflin Lake, but didn't think I would ever see one!

Rick Meril said...

if so,,,,,,,,,,,,a true miracle at this point in our human occurpation of the east coast............Hope your observation was indeed correct.............they seem to need deep snow and very humnan-less conditions,,,,,,,,,,,,,is it possible a fisher that you saw?

T. R. White said...

My friend and his wife told me that they saw a wolverine here in northern Trumbull county Monday evening (June 30 2014) in the corner of a field. They looked on the computer to get an image and said that it was exactly like the picture. He told another friend and that person said that he has been scoffing his son for saying that he saw a wolverine. I guess it`s possible.

Rick Meril said...

T.R.,,,,,,,,,,,,,,thanks for checking in.............Trumbull county is where?

T. R. White said...

Trumbull county is in N. E. Ohio

Rick Meril said...

Ohio U. grad, I am down in Athens,,,,,,,,,,,,,if ever there was to be Wolverines back in the buckeye state, southeastern Ohio with it's forest regrowth would be the likely emanating point(just as it has been for the bobcat resurgence that you guys have recognized over the past decade.

Anonymous said...

Just saw what I beleive to be an Eastern Wolf. I live in Chardon Oh. We have been curious as to why we have'nt seen many rabbits the last year or so. Now we know. Also last year we had found or our dogs have brought home numerous remains of coons and opposums as well as skins scattered here and there.

Rick Meril said...

Hi Chardon, Ohio...........Eastern Coyotes in Ohio,,,,,,,,Eastern Wolves up in Algonquin Park in Canada and eastern wolves in the USA except for the 100 or so on the Barrier Islands off of North Carolina.......And yes, the Eastern Coyotes keep the rodents and rabbits in check

Anonymous said...

i was shocked to see a red tailed fox crossing the rail road tracks in akron Ohio near the while pond area. Are these common sightings in Ohio,?

Rick Meril said...

red foxes are ubiquitous across the eastern usa

Anonymous said...

So I was doing searches this morning for Wolverines in Ohio and came across this. This morning in Portage county I am certain I saw a Wolverine. Very close to Lake Rockwell.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, further to my comment above. Portage County in NE Ohio, somewhat close to Trumbull county mentioned above.

Rick Meril said...

I always hope that our complete suite of carnivores return to wherever enough viable habitat still exists for their long term persistence............Hard to believe that Northeast Ohio still harbors the type of "solitude" and remoteness" that Wolverines require,,,,,,,,,,let alone the deep persistent snow cover to raise their young in deep into the Spring

Anonymous said...

Okay not that anyone is going to read this but as far as the Bob Cat caught in the trap outside of Montpelier, Ohio. I personally know the guy who found it in his trap. The news paper showed a picture of it in the trap as well and no it wasn't dead it was very much alive and still alive when DNR and animal control captured it it wasn't till they had it in captivity that they shot I mean it died in a racoon trap! Someone is trying to keep out of trouble for killing what's considered an endangered species in ohio.
Maybe someone should look into it wouldn't take much except pulling the old newspaper that had it on the front page alive and well.

Rick Meril said...

lousy that this type of behaviour is at play in the Buckeye State

Anonymous said...

Rick, 3 weeks ago me an 2 friends were fishing just outside of Caldwell Oh and we saw a mountain lion cross the road just feet in front of us. I am positive it was a mountain lion. I reported it to the DNR and they did not sound surprised of the report.

Rick Meril said...

Bobcats are back.............Pumas unlikely.............but hope that changes over the years ahead...........I went to school in Athens, the most rugged part of the state near West Virginia......Bobcats just coming back over the past two decades,,,,,,,,,,

Anonymous said...

Is it possible that we have coy wolves in southeast Ohio. Had people keep stopping by our house telling us of an enormous coyote that kept crossing the road close to our house. Finally saw it when it stole one of our chickens. It was huge for a coyote and I' very familiar with them. It's head seemed abnormally big for its body and it ran with it's tail erect not down and slinking like a coyote. The tail was extra bushy also.

Rick Meril said...

Eastern Coyotes(called Coywolves by Massachusetts biologist Jon Way)are likely in the Great Lakes States to some degree,,,,,,,,,,,,,including Ohio.........the middle Atlantic states on down to the Carolinas...........Ad mixes of western coyotes, eastern coyotes ............a true canis soup as populations merge and mate

Tim Williams said...

approximately 40 years ago I was witness to a Timber Wolf that was contained in the trunk of a 56 chevy. The wolf was so large that the tail and other anatomy parts had to be shoved while at the same time closing the trunk to the vehicle.
The Wolf was supposedly killed in Richmondale Ohio near Chillicothe. The Wolf as I was told, was attacking a farmers livestock. It was accompanied by a pack of Wolfs. There have also been reports of sightings of Bear and Panthers. I remember hearing of a Cat track in the snow, that with what was then primitive means of identification was belonging to a Lynx. Panthers knob supposedly the last recorded kill of a Panther in Pike County Ohio, may be worth investigating.

Rick Meril said...

Hi always, hope that the wolves and pumas will breed again in Ohio one day..............At this point, seems virtually nil that such a reproducing population for either species exists in the Buckeye State