Determined bobcat snacks on a coyote bait

A couple weeks back, as we engaged in the popular Maine pastime of debating the existence of mountain lions in our state, wildlife biologist Walter Jakubas of the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife checked in with some information I hadn’t really considered.

A bobcat leaps up to gnaw on a roadkill deer carcass that was being used as coyote bait in Augusta. (Photo courtesy of Mike Grant)

Bobcats, Jakubas said, are also known predators of deer.

A couple days later, I received an email from a man who said he certainly believed Jakubas, and said he had some photos that seemed to prove his point.

Mike Grant, who lives in Augusta, said he’d captured a couple of game camera images in the back woods in 2016, and was amazed at what he saw.

“Originally, we were baiting coyotes, but soon found out that wasn’t the only critter lurking around,” Grant wrote. “[This bobcat] had no problem decimating the roadkill deer we hung and I imagine if it was alive [the cat] could easily have taken it down.”

A bobcat ponders its next move. (Photo courtesy of Mike Grant)

One photo shows the cat leaping into the air to gnaw on the roadkill deer, which is suspended by a rope. In another photo time-stamped 12 minutes later, the bobcat stands on the ground, appearing to plan its next attack.

“Two days later, we returned to find out the entire carcass had been dragged off by what appeared to be either a big single critter or a pack of critters, judging by the drag marks,” Grant wrote. All that was left was the rope.”

And Grant said he was lucky enough to get another peek at the cat.

“I was able to eyeball it at 250 yards or so the following day around the same time and it was about 40 pounds from what I could see at that distance,” he wrote. “Beautiful animal and we were surprised it was out there.”


John Holyoke

About John Holyoke

John Holyoke has been enjoying himself in Maine's great outdoors since he was a kid. Today, he's the Outdoors editor for the BDN, a job that allows him to meet up with Maine outdoors enthusiasts in their natural habitat. The stories he gathers provide fodder for his columns, and this blog.