Average Height For A 4 Year Old Boy In Us Hunting for Mississippi Bobcats

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Hunting for Mississippi Bobcats

In the forests of Mississippi, large predators are rare. We don’t have grizzlies or wolves and contrary to what your friend Robbie says, there hasn’t been a confirmed sighting of a panther in decades. What we have are lynxes.

What is a Bobcat?

With a scientific name like Lynx rufus, the lynx is true and original Mississippian. Full-bodied and about twice the size of a large house cat, they are easily recognized by their bobtail head. Yellow/grey to red in color with horizontal lines of black dashed stripes and small ear tufts, they resemble the closely related lynx. The lynx is muscular, and its hind legs are longer than its front legs, which gives it a characteristic waddling gait.

Life is hard for a wild cat. While some lynxes have lived to the age of 32 in the safe confines of captivity where normal food and predators do not exist, the average lifespan of these shaggy cats in the wild is about half that, and most never live past a decade. The coyote occurs with lynx even though MSU studies have shown that they are capable of coexisting in the same area as long as the food supply is adequate. In addition to coyotes, the young kittens have eagles, hawks, foxes and raccoons to worry about.

They grow quickly and by their first birthday, provided they succeed, they can weigh up to ten kilograms. Typically, in Mississippi, adult big cats taken by hunters and trappers range from 15-20 pounds and are up to a yard long, although it is possible for them to grow much larger. These bad boys are becoming huge in the northern states, and in 2009 an 18-year-old, 52-pound man was arrested in Minnesota.

Bob’s habitat and habits

In a study conducted by MDWFP in 1989-92. on adult lynxes captured, radio-collared, and released, they found that these short-tailed shrews live in almost any environment, but tend to prefer farmland and pine plantations to other areas. Berries are the absolute enemies of wild rabbits, field mice, cotton rats and squirrels throughout Mississippi’s forests. Your best bet for finding lynx is to find a densely marked overgrown area. Eventually, old Mr. Bobcat will try to move in and settle down. When they do, they will set up a den and move out within a radius of it, marking their territory. While you may smell strong urine or occasionally find lynx droppings, be aware that they often wade into water to do their business, especially if there is a healthy coyote population in the area. Males have been observed to often use stream banks as travel and hunting trails, so you may be able to find prints in these areas if they are muddy enough. Remember, even though they have five toes on their front paws, only four will be present in their tracks.

The berries are crepuscular, which means they are active primarily at dusk. This makes the lurking time a few hours just before and after sunrise and sunset. However, during the cold, short-day winters, especially in December and January, lynxes break this usual habit and are often seen rummaging around during regular daylight hours.

Tips and tricks for hunters

Most Mississippi sportsmen have the best luck with trapping bobcats, but a few make good sport of hunting these guys. It’s not uncommon for hound dogs to chase those cats off during deer or hog chases and remember, if it’s open gun season then bobcats are fair game too. According to MDWFP, there are no daily or possession limits or minimum size limits on lynx from November 1st through February 28th each year due to the predatory nature of these bad boys. Any caliber from 22LR up is a good bobcat round, but if you’re looking for a nice mount, shotguns might be a bad idea.

You can specifically target these cats and get them to stop with mouse and rabbit calls, but be in close contact with your camouflage as their eyesight is almost as good as a turkey’s. If your calls go unanswered after an hour or two, dash to another area and set it up again.

Remember, old Mr. Bob, aka Rufus, is a wily forest cat, but each one you manage to collect will save a legion of rabbits, a few deer and make an interesting horse.

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