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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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Monday, July 29, 2013

Just as New Jersey has seen a renaissance over the last 40 years in populations of Black Bears and Eastern Coyotes(Coywolves) occupying the state, so too is the "Garden State" once again home to the Bobcat......This highly industrial state is still 40% forested and about 15% agricultural land...................The Bobcat is again finding a way to carve out a living here despite being virtually extirpated from one of the most densely populated states in America by the 1970's,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,A rewilding program with "Cats" brought in from Maine has Bobcats back in the woodlands and fields........................


A photo submitted yesterday by a Liberty Township resident depicting a large bobcat stalking through the snow, carrying what appears to be a large rabbit in its mouth, ignited discussion about what experts are calling the most reclusive animal in New Jersey.
New Jersey's bobcat population appears to be on the rise, said Tracy Leaver, executive director of the Woodlands Wildlife Refuge who has worked to rehabilitate 17 bobcats since 1997.

The nonprofit, which is located in Alexandria Township and is the only facility licensed to work with injured bobcats in the state, has successfully rehabilitated 10 bobcats in the last 12 months, releasing them back to their home afterwards, Leaver said.
The bobcats brought to the sanctuary have either been hit by a car, caught unintentionally by a snare or orphaned, she said.
“One of the things that we definitely want to do is not have people be afraid of bobcats," Leaver said. “This is probably the most reclusive wild animal that we have in the state. That anyone gets to see one... it’s an amazing, amazing thing to experience."

Bobcats, she said, have “absolutely no interest in the human population." They feed on small, rabbit-sized animals.
The bobcat “epitomizes the wild’s never going to be some somebody’s pet," she said. The bobcat is also a “testament to the habitat that we have in New Jersey," Leaver said.

According to a newsletter recently circulated by the sanctuary, the bobcat was listed as a state endangered species in 1991, its population challenged since the 1800s because of hunting and habitat destruction as large areas were cleared for lumber, charcoal and agriculture. Construction of major highways are also believed to have had a part in the decline of the population.
BobcatA large bobcat stalking through the snow in Liberty Township. 
In the late 1970s several New England bobcats were released into New Jersey in hopes of restoring the population. A research project by New Jersey Division of Fish & Wildlife’s Threatened and Endangered Species Program is ongoing and includes the monitoring and study of the efficacy of the rehabilitation project.
One bobcat recently treated by the sanctuary and released was a 6-month old female found below Route 80 in Warren County.
Charles Fineran, director of open space in Allamuchy Township, has seen bobcats before and photographed one while hiking outdoors in April 2011.

He said he feels lucky to have had the experience. “They’re rare enough, the sitting of those’re really quite lucky unless you’re fish and game and you know where they’re at or have them tagged.”Fineran said he’s not anticipating another sighting any time soon.“I don’t expect to have that happen in my life again.”

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