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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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Wednesday, March 9, 2016

We have enjoyed reporting on the recolonizing Bobcat population in Ohio............Extirpated from this state in the mid 1800's, our "bobbed feline" began showing up again in the Buckeye State right after World War 2 in 1946...........Today there are two distinct populations of the "cats" occupying the northeast and southern sectors of Ohio and recent research is revealing that both sub populations are dining on the same rodents, rabbits and deer(likely mostly scavenged) ......................Interesting that the eastern population is growing faster than the southern population ..............Ohio Div. of Wildlife and Native Species Support researchers have concluded that diet is not a factor in the different growth rates-----Additional research will be needed to determine if differing habitat alteration and/or other human impacts on the land are the causal agents of the differing growth patterns of the two sub groups

Diet of the Recovering Ohio Bobcat (Lynx rufus) with a Consideration of Two Subpopulations
No Access
Christa Rose1
Native Species Support, P.O. Box 1302, Cambridge, Ohio 43725
Suzanne Prange
Ohio Division of Wildlife, 360 East State Street, Athens, 45701
Corresponding author: e-mail: 


Bobcats (Lynx rufus) are a native carnivore of Ohio, but by
1850 were extirpated or nearly so following pioneer
 settlement of the state. The first modern record of a bobcat
in Ohio was an adult male killed in 1946. Distribution
accounts indicate that population re- establishment began
 around 2000.

Today the bobcat is protected, and verified sightings, camera
 surveys, and genetic analyses point to two subpopulations:
 a fast growing, self-sustaining eastern subpopulation, and a
more slowly growing southern subpopulation. We evaluated
 stomach contents of 120 adult and subadult bobcat carcasses
 to help understand the disparity in subpopulation growth rates,
 and inform proper bobcat management. We identified prey
 species morphologically. We quantified prey species taken
and converted their frequencies to caloric intake estimates.
 We calculated dry weight estimates of prey groups and
 compared them between bobcat age classes, sexes, regions,
 and across seasons.
 We examined regional diet differences further by
calculating diet and condition indices. Eastern cottontail
(Sylvilagus floridanus) occurred most often. White-tailed
deer (Odocoileus virginianus) supplied the greatest caloric
 value. Small rodents and insectivores were the most
 common prey group. Adults consumed more, as defined
by weight, meso-mammals and large rodents than subadults
Diet composition did not differ between sexes. Weight
of large mammal intake differed significantly between
 winter and summer, being greater in winter. Diet
composition and prey group weights did not differ regionally.

 Dietary niche breadth of the southern subpopulation
 indicated more even consumption of prey groups than
 the eastern, whereas food niche overlap between regions
 was high. The condition index of eastern and southern
 bobcats also did not differ. We present the first rigorous
 analysis of bobcat diet in Ohio, and infer that diet is not a
 likely driver of disparate subpopulation growth rates of this
recovering species.

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