Morning Read: Is it time to hunt and trap more bobcats in NY?

New York state is taking comments on a plan that would allow hunters to take more bobcats in more parts of the state.  This from the Plattsburgh Press-Republican.

The plan is really calling for an expansion of many areas where we would like to have a harvest of the species,” said state wildlife biologist Paul Jensen of the Warrensburg DEC office.

“This will give us a better idea of bobcat distribution and enable us to improve our hunting and trapping seasons.

“We’ve been harvesting bobcats for many years,” he added. “On all accounts, bobcats are relatively stable.”

As Phil Brown reported recently in his Adirondack Explorer blog, the primary change in the North Country would be an expansion of the trapping season.

[T]he trapping season in the Adirondacks and the rest of the North Country would be extended. The season now runs from October 25 to December 10. Under the plan, it would be extended to February 15. The hunting season will not change.

The trapping season in the Adirondacks had been shorter than elsewhere to protect fishers. Since the fisher population has rebounded, the department feels that rationale no longer obtains.

The plan also calls for extending both the hunting and trapping seasons in central Tug Hill to February 15.

What do you think?  A good sport hunting opportunity?  Or are you concerned about the expanded taking of bobcats?  Comments welcome.

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20 Comments on “Morning Read: Is it time to hunt and trap more bobcats in NY?”

  1. Pete Klein says:

    The simple answer is no since I am not living in fear of bobcats. I only fear politicians.

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  2. Paul says:

    I am okay with the plan, it sounds like it is well thought out. As long as the population is stable there isn’t a problem with expanding the take. I do question whether this will really increase the harvest. But, as a hunter, I would never shoot one. It is a real treat to see them in the woods I have seen only a few. This is really a non-issue. Not very news worthy.

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  3. sratchy says:

    I personally think that trapping constitutes cruelty to animals.

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  4. Walker says:

    Is trapping really “sport hunting”? Seems a more market-oriented activity. I guess it’s getting more humane all the time, but still, being caught in a body gripping trap that is checked only every three days is probably not a lot of fun for the critter. It would be a whole lot more humane if they used a 22.

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  5. Jim Bullard says:

    I’m with Scratchy & Walker on trapping. I think it is unnecessarily cruel and as Pete observes, I don’t see what purpose it serves.

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  6. Will Doolittle says:

    Can we recruit the bobcats to hunt the wild pigs?

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  7. Ken says:

    Too many Bobcats; but, not too many humans? I doubt that conspicuous consumption on the part of the Bobcats is aiding in the pell-mell rush toward the Earth’s next great die off. How about we let the Bobcats control their populations the old fashioned way (prey availability) and humans control their exponential population explosion the new fashioned way “birth control”.

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  8. Pete Klein says:

    Will,
    Maybe recruit the bobcats to trap the politicians?

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  9. mervel says:

    Trapping is a good side business for many people in the North Country. I understand the concern about cruelty but most trapping today can be done humanely. Trapping is more difficult than hunting you have to understand the animals habitat its habits and how it thinks. You don’t just go out and set some traps in the woods and be successful. I have not trapped since my youth, but really enjoyed it.

    Ken, why do you think humans need to control their population explosion? We don’t have enough young people in the US or Europe now, thank God for recent immigrants who still value children.

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  10. Paul says:

    The Fisher is a key predator of the Spruce Grouse. Since one rational for shortening the Bob Cat season was to protect Fishers maybe this is partially to help the Spruce Grouse (a species in serious trouble)?

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  11. Paul says:

    Trapping is an art. These guys are probably not doing too much damage to the Cat population. If they were that is what seasons are for.

    Don’t trap myself but, if done properly, it is not cruel at all. Many Bob Cats unintentionally trapped in coyote traps are released from leg hold traps unharmed.

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  12. mervel says:

    Spruce Grouse always scare the crap out of me when hiking and they blast about a foot from my head. They are a fascinating bird.

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  13. Anita says:

    I may never understand why people think it’s a great thing to kill animals that they do not eat. Apex predators like the bobcat are good for the natural world, and this particular one does not seem to cause problems for people. I would prefer that we leave them be.

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  14. PNElba says:

    How about controlling the deer population first and then go after the bobcats?

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  15. Paul says:

    Mervel,

    Those are Ruffed Grouse blasting into the air. Right now they think that SG are almost gone from the Adirondacks. If you see one it is very special. They don’t take off they are almost like a tame bird.

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  16. Paul says:

    PNElba, you must live near me. Here we have way too many deer. Where I grew up and spend the summers (and foolishly hunt for them) in the Adirondacks not so much.

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  17. Paul says:

    Anita, they trap for the pelts which I am okay with. Don’t do it, but I am okay with it. But if you shoot one (and even for trappers) you really could eat a bobcat no reason why not. Like PNElba says (and I concur) there are tons of deer. There are also tons of waterfowl around these days, no one should go hungry around here. Problem is that we count on the super market instead of the natural market!

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  18. Wren Hawk says:

    Opposed to trapping, period and think the hunting of Bobcat is ill conceived…and not too popular at least from what I’ve seen on various boards that have hosted this conversation since the DEC recommendation came out 2 weeks or so ago.

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  19. Mervel says:

    ahhh thanks Paul. I wondered about that.

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  20. Ken says:

    Mervel asks: Ken, why do you think humans need to control their population explosion?

    The reasons are legion

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