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Native Californian, biologist, wildlife conservation consultant, retired Smithsonian scientist, father of two daughters, grandfather of four. INTJ. Believes nature is infinitely more interesting than shopping malls. Born 100 years too late.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

The cat that won't show its face

A camera trapper's saddest pleasure is getting pictures of a much sought species, but never getting them right.

This is my problem with a local bobcat. I get pictures of it at three different camera sets, but I rarely see its face.

After months of putting scent lures on the patch, I finally got the cat's attention (I'm talking about the picture above). Unlike the cooperative mountain lion at this location, the bobcat played hard to get.

It visited this set only one other time. Though its face was visible in that picture it walked on by so close to the camera that it was overexposed.

Recently I set a camera on a new trail that seemed promising. The cat showed up the first week moving at a good clip, and the camera captured only its backside.

A couple minutes later it retraced it steps, giving another view of its backside and the spots on the back of its ears.

Nearby there's a nice mossy rock, and I was able to lure it there using castoreum. It posed well, but once again it didn't show its face.

I'm still working at it. I just have to find something that occupies the rascal's attention long enough for the camera to fire several shots.


Neil said...

Hmm...perhaps a goldfish in a bowl?

Camera Trap Codger said...

For sure, I am the goldfish in the bowl.

Anonymous said...

All the pictures of bobcats that we have seen on the Wind river Ranch do not include the face. Odd. But, me and the miller wimmen were driving up the lane after a basketball game, and we saw a young bobcat by the side of the road. We stopped and he/she froze in the headlights for about 15 seconds. Pretty neat.

Anonymous said...

Are you using two cameras at each site?