Bobcats

Emily Hoyer / Flicker CC

 

This past year's especially harsh winter has prompted the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department to rethink a proposal to bring back the state's bobcat trapping season.

In January, the state Fish and Game Commission voted to have the department draw up a proposal for a bobcat season, but those plans were put on hold by the harsh winter.

Fish and Game's Doug Whitefield says winters are hard on young bobcats.

The Telegraph reports the last time New Hampshire allowed bobcat trapping was 1989.

Fish And Game's Glenn Normandeau

May 11, 2015
Kevin Micalizzi / Flickr/CC

Fish and Game Executive Director joins us to discuss his agency's mission, its 150th anniversary, and its wildlife management planning process - including decisions around hunting permits and fishing catch limits.

Sam Evans-Brown / NHPR

In a meeting Wednesday, the New Hampshire Fish and Game Commission began a discussion on whether to open a bobcat trapping season. The proposal is far from final, but it’s already attracting the ire of the animal rights community.

Late last year biologists at the University of New Hampshire announced the results of a study, commissioned by Fish and Game. They estimated that from 1989 to today, the bobcat population in New Hampshire had rebounded from less than 200 cats to somewhere between 800 and 1,400.

Emily Hoyer / Flicker CC

A new study from the University of New Hampshire and Fish and Game finds that the state’s bobcat population has rebounded substantially.

Bobcats were hunted and trapped all the way through 1989, when the cats became so scarce that the state ended bobcat hunting. Back then there were estimated to be fewer than 200 bobcats in the state. Today, the new study estimates there could be as many as 800 to 1,200 of the elusive felines.

The study didn’t ask the question of what factors are leading to the recovery, and there is almost certainly more than one.