Bobcat - Wildlife


Bobcats (Lynx rufus rufus) are 2 to 3.5 feet long, typically stand 1.5 to 2 feet at the shoulder, and weigh 10 to 30 lbs. Males are noticeably larger than females. Body color ranges from light brown to brown fur with distinctive black or dark brown spots, lined markings, and a short bobbed tail.


Bobcats pose no threat to humans, their property or pets. Bobcats are naturally very shy and nocturnal. Interaction between these solitary animals and humans is not common.

Bobcats may establish a main den or maternity den in a cave or tree hollow and several smaller dens throughout its territory for shelter.

Bobcats breed December to February. Gestation is 7 to 10 weeks. One to six kittens are born per litter. Young are weaned at 2 months and begin to hunt at 5 months. Young bobcats stay with their mother for 8 to 10 months and then leave their mother’s territory.


Bobcats are carnivores. A natural diet includes rabbits, rodents, birds, bats and young deer or fawns.


Bobcats inhabit dense forest, open woodlands, grasslands, and wooded suburban areas of Fairfax County.


For information on managing wildlife interactions and resolving human-wildlife conflicts, the Virginia Wildlife Conflict Helpline is available toll-free at (855) 571-9003, 8:00AM-4:30PM, Monday through Friday.This helpline is a collaborative effort between the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries and the U.S. Department of Agriculture - Wildlife Services.


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