Bobcat Damage Prevention and Control Methods

Overview of Damage Prevention and Control Methods

Habitat Modification

Most types of habitat modification are too expensive and too damaging to the environment to implement on a broad scale. In small locales, however, remove ground cover to reduce prey species and the cover bobcats need to hunt. Eliminate food sources that attract other animals. Do not feed or water your pets outdoors. Modify bird feeders to prevent seed from reaching the ground, as spillage attracts rodents.  

Exclusion

Use woven-wire enclosures to discourage bobcats from entering poultry and small animal pens at night. Bobcats can climb wooden fence posts and can jump fences 6 feet or more in height. Use woven wire overhead if necessary.  

Add two electric wires at 12 and 18 inches above the ground to prevent bobcats from climbing fences.  

Frightening

Use night lighting in conjunction with white flashing lights, or bright continuous lighting, to repel bobcats. You also can use blaring music and barking dogs to discourage bobcats temporarily.  

Repellents

None are available. 

Toxicants

None are registered.

Shooting

Bobcats respond to predator calls and can be shot when in range. Trained dogs can be used to track and tree bobcats to remove problem animals. Rifles of .22-caliber centerfire or larger, or shotguns with No. 2 or larger shot are recommended. Check local and state laws for restrictions on shooting. 

Trapping

Check local and state laws for restrictions on trapping. Bobcats often hunt by sight, so using a visual attractant can be effective. A flag set uses a piece of fur or a couple of feathers suspended about 4 feet above ground with fine wire or string. Bobcats can be drawn to traps by “flags” hung from trees or rocks located near trap sets. Where use of animal parts is prohibited, use aluminum foil, CD-ROMs, or imitation fur or feathers.