An Unwanted Guest

We have had an unwanted visitor hanging around the last couple of days.  It is a bobcat.  It’s driving our dogs crazy and making me very nervous.  Though it is very beautiful, I would really like it to move on.

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Bobcat

Bobcats weigh about 20-30lbs and can be a danger to many of our farm animals, and the smaller children.  In the wild in our area they mostly eat rabbits and rodents, though they will take a young or sick deer.  It is impossible to know it’s motivation at this time of year.  It could be VERY hungry.  It could have a litter of newborn kits.  It could just be looking for an easy meal.  But the fact it’s hanging out more than one day is not a good sign.

It’s likely most interested in the chickens and the barn carts at this point though I am sure that it knows that there are bunnies in the barn (by the smell).  But it would take a lot of courage for it to try to get in the barn.  It’d have to be starving or crazy.  I’m not too worried about the calf either, because again, it would have to be starving or crazy to take on the cow and the barn dog to try to get the calf, who at this point weighs close to the same as an adult deer.  Not to mention it knows it can’t pull the calf out of the pen IF it somehow gets him (we have a 6 foot high fence and the calf is too big for it at this point) and it wouldn’t consider inside the pen a safe place to eat.  So definitely not worried about the calf at this point.  Now a mountain lion – that would be another story for the calf.

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So mostly we are concerned about the chickens and cats.  Keeping a close eye on everything.  And with all the security we have put in place on the coop and pen the chickens are pretty darned secure.  I hope the cats have enough instinct to know he is around and to stay close to the barn.  And I’m not letting the younger kids go check for eggs without one of the older ones with them.

Predators are always an issue living in the Rocky Mountains, and we have plenty of different species of them to contest with.  But it is pretty amazing to see (from the safety of your home or car) a wild predator walking around in real life – as opposed to in pictures or at the zoo.

7 thoughts on “An Unwanted Guest

    • I have never heard of a bobcat attacking a child. Coyotes are much bigger of a problem and there have been many reports of them attacking children (we have coyotes here too). However, I figure if a bobcat can take down a fawn, then they could definitely take down my 30 lb 4 or 5 year old. So just for safety’s sake I send one of the older children out with them.
      I think bobcats are much more timid than coyotes and that is why they don’t mess with humans if they don’t have to. Coyotes can be pretty darn aggressive. If it was a coyote hanging out at our property for a few days my husband would probably have to do something permanent about it to protect the kids. But with the bobcat we will just wait for him to decide that there is nothing here worth it and move on. And we will do our best to keep everyone safe while we wait.

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  1. Well it looks like we have the same problem! Your unwelcome guest is much prettier than mine though. I have a Coyote and 3 pups living about 70 feet from one of my coops. A few nights ago one scaled a 7 foot fence to enter my property. Nothing bad has happened yet, but I’m constantly checking on my ladies. The last few nights I’ve kept all the outdoor flood lights on, I think it’s helping. Be safe! I’m not much worried about myself and a coyote… but a bob cat has my respect!

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  2. That is a very beautiful cat. I’m with you, I love seening these these beautiful animals in their natural setting but I do not want them coming to my farm looking for chicken dinner. I too live in the mountains and have had all kinds of animal visitors. Usually it is just a coon or skunk. We here tell from neighbors every year that someone saw a bear or a lion but we don’t usually see them. I even bought a puppy to raise out in the barn to be a barn dog but somehow he ended up as another in/out house pet..LOL

    We did kill a coyote this winter that came looking for chicken dinner and just a few weeks later there were three lions ( that had attacked neighbor dogs) killed by the DWS. They tore up the border collie that lives on the place next to us…..thats a little close for me! I love all your posts and I have added you to my favorites list and I will be back. I love your cow!!!! I have been trying to talk my husband into letting us get a cow. He does not want one, does not want to milk her and thinks she will cost too much to feed and that we won’t know what to do with all the milk. So on so on……I still want one, I want our own raw fresh milk, I want to make our own butter, cheese, sourcream and buttermilk. Not to mention ,I just love farm animals! We too strive to produce more and more of what we need to feed our family. We have a huge garden but like you it is a challenge because we have a short season. I can all summer, just about everything I can get my hands on IF it is something we will eat. (no point putting it up if we wont eat it, like the beet chuttney I did two years ago) I homeschool my two granddaughters. My guys hunt for deer and elk and we have our beef and pork raised. We have chickens but we have not ventured into raising chickens for meat………..yet. :o)

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