Where to hunt Bobcat
The Bobcat, along with Eurasian Lynx, Iberian Lynx, and Canadian Lynx, belongs to the genus Lynx and is the smallest of these species.It is highly adaptable and can thrive in various habitats from boreal forests to semi-deserts. Its distribution covers almost all of the Lower 48 (with the exception of the Midwest),Canada just a bit to the north from the border, and the northern half of Mexico, and hunting opportunities exist from British Columbia to Arizona.
The most affordable bobcat hunting opportunities are predator calling hunts in the southern part of its US range; these can go as low as $350 a hunter a day. A 5-day outfitted hunt near the US-Canadian border, with lodging and meals, will set you back by $4,000-$5,000. The most expensive offers combine Bobcat with Cougar and/or Lynx hunting over hounds; these can run into $10,000 and more.
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Hunting predators with packs of hounds has an ancient history and stirs a lot of emotions. Often the emotions are the result of incomplete understanding of the hunt and what goes into it. Bobcat hunting over hounds is not much different from a similar pursuit of the Cougar, the subject of this blog story.10 Aug 2017 Cats, Dogs and Mixed Emotions: Hunting Mountain Lions with Hounds.
When to hunt Bobcat?
Bobcat hunting seasons in the states where it is treated as a predator may be generous and can run from August to March. In the more northern parts of its range, where it is considered a furbearer, the seasons are focused on the time when the fur would be in its prime, that is, winter. For hunting over hounds, the amount of snow cover is essential: you need some to locate the tracks, but at the same time not so much that it impedes with your movements.
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Bobcats are more common and less nocturnal than other feline species, and sometimes can be quite successfully harvested simply by still-hunting the likely places with a rifle at the ready. Calling is perhaps the most efficient way to get a Bobcat, with prey in distress calls drawing them real well. But by far the most exciting Bobcat hunt is to pursue them with packs of hounds. In the first stage of this hunt, the hunters must find a track of a suitable animal. Correct track identification is essential, as Bobcat shares habitat with other felines. When the track is identified, the hounds are released and the pursuit begins. To follow the hounds across all kinds of impossible terrain, to stalk the cat when they bring it to bay, and to make a careful shot overcoming fatigue and excitement is much, much easier said than done.
Why hunt Bobcat?
Felines have historically had a strong emotional significance to us humans. Paradoxically, the yellow and black spots of a leopard act as a sign of danger, while the purr of a domestic cat is one of the most pacifying sounds in existence. Once you understand this paradox, the draw of Bobcat hunting will become more understandable. The elusive creature is not so easy to outsmart. It is small enough to evade a human easily in the dense forests; it prefers to kill its own food, and therefore not easy to attract by baiting; it is as much at home on treetops as on solid grounds, adding to escape strategies; it’s always on the alert, and is unlikely to let you come anywhere near itself if you try to track it through the snow. The challenge of the pursuit adds to the excitement of Bobcat hunting, and and makes the soft, beautiful spotted fur so much more valuable.
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