Beautiful American bobcat.

The Bobcat geographic range is shown below. It was created using Google My Maps. It is carefully based on the most up to date map at the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species™ (Red List). The advantage with this map is that it can be adjusted in real time by anyone who wishes to collaborate and fine tune it. The thought behind producing this map is to allow anyone with the knowledge and inclination to improve our knowledge of the bobcat by upgrading this map.

Not only can the range boundaries be adjusted by anyone (but please respect the map), flags can be embedded in the map which can,for example, describe a sighting that is of interest and which may extend the boundary. Or conversely, the boundary can be reduced (the more likely outcome) if someone knows that there have been no sightings in an area for a considerable time. Being constantly fine tuned should make this map of the bobcat geographic range the most accurate in the world bar none. You’ll have to be precise and know how to edit Google Maps. Please don’t attempt it unless you do.

What is the status of the bobcat at 2012?

Bobcat with grey squirrel in mouth – California – photo by randomtruth

The bobcat geographic range, as at 2002 and per Wild Cats of the World, extended from British Columbia in the south west of Canada and all along a narrow strip of southern Canada to Nova Scotia in the east. In addition, the bobcat used to range over all 48 contiguous (neighbouring, adjoining) US states but as can be seen clearly from the map a “hole” appeared in the more densely human populated and cultivated areas in the north east regions of the United States. Apparently, in 1987, in Ohio a very rare bobcat was shot. It was attacking someones hens. Why shoot it? Anyway it is listed as occupying Ohio still (Red List) but the map indicates that is doesn’t. Wrong? Please contribute.

In Mexico they occupy the less density populated northern areas. The bobcat geographic range is reported to be expanding in Canada, going northwards. Can someone confirm that from on the ground observations? Bobcats favour territory that is not too high above sea level but they have been trapped at 2,475 metres above sea level in the west of the USA and at 3,500 metres above sea level in Mexico.

Bearing in mind the large range of the bobcat it is not surprising that they are adaptable enough to be found in a large variety of habitats that includes, swamps, forests and grassland but they prefer dense cover. In the south of their range they prefer “bottomland hardwood forests”. Bobcats can be attacked by coyotes so tend to avoid areas where the coyote is found. When coyotes moved into New York State and Maine the bobcat population was limited.

Photo: Attribution-Non-Commercial-Share Alike 2.0 Generic Creative Commons license.

Note: this page has been republished to refresh it. Some small amendments have been made.

From Bobcat Geographic Range to Wild Cat Species

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Michael Broad

Hi, I'm a 71-year-old retired solicitor (attorney in the US). Before qualifying I worked in many jobs including professional photography. I have a girlfriend, Michelle. I love nature, cats and all animals. I am concerned about their welfare.

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  • I regularly get bobcat pictures on my trail cameras near Salem, Indiana. Have been seeing them for 3 years now.

    • Hi Jeff. I'd love to see one. You can upload photos to a comment. The instructions are below the comment box.

  • we think we saw a bobcat in Vallejo, Ca. It was about 150' or less away. It was 3x the size of a house cat. it had white boots, grey coat with swirly blackish stripes. By interstate 80 at the Redwood road offramp, on a hill below a house, where there may be a "greenbelt" access to other open property. I want to know if we really saw a bobcat. I am always surprised by deer that live and multiply in urban areas. thank you for a prompt reply. DO NOT keep or use my address.

    • I was hunting in the Pasqua Hills in North central Saskatchewan.
      Two mornings in a row I had the pleasure of watching a bobcat. I was in a tree stand at the time so I was not scented.
      The location was Lat.53.00508, Long.103.37366.
      That was the first for me. I have seen lynx several times.
      I did not realize that the bobcats had gone so far North.
      Unfortunately I did not have a working camera at the time.

      • Thanks John for taking the time to comment and record your sighting. Did you see a Canada lynx rather than a bobcat? They do look different but are similar. Your sighting is within the range of the Canada lynx.

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