Rainy Days – Bobcats

January 24, 2010

As promised, here are some photos of the bobcats taken over the past week or so.  We saw the female kitten early in the week and then saw the adult male later in the week.  I also had a very rare daytime sighting of the mother on Saturday.  All in all, a pretty good week considering the weather. Based on my prior experience, once the breeding season ends the sightings will become much less frequent.  Luckily it is looking like we should have a spectacular wildflower year and I hope to be on the road as much as possible this Spring.

“Shy Today”  –  Young Female Bobcat, Goleta, CA

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Rain, rain, rain…

January 22, 2010

I really don’t mind the rain, but after a full week of it I wouldn’t mind a change in the weather…

The weather has actually been very accommodating, other than sneaking up behind me and drenching me yesterday!  Most of the storm fronts have moved through by early afternoon each day and given us the opportunity to get out to Lake Los Carneros after work.  The weather has made the bobcats more difficult to find but we have still managed to catch brief glimpses of them.  I’ll post a few photos in the following post.

Today looks to be the last day with a high chance of rain, so it looks like it should end just in time for the weekend.  Here are a few photos highlighting the different weather conditions we’ve experienced over the last week or so.

“Better Than Coffee”  –  Sunrise at Lake Los Carneros, Goleta, CA

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Less Fur, More Feather

January 13, 2010

In case anyone’s wondering, I still find the time to photograph things that aren’t bobcats.  Here are a few recent photos that I like.

“Anna’s Hummingbird”  –  Lake Los Carneros, Goleta CA

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Bobcats – January 10, 2010

January 11, 2010

Note to self:  Bring a spare memory card!

You can probably imagine the frustration of photographing an unexpected scene, only to find yourself without enough memory.  Well, that happened to me on Sunday.  I had gotten complacent about bringing an extra memory card on our walks to the lake.  The lack of long encounters with the bobcats, and my resolution to pursue quality over quantity, made it seem like bringing an extra memory card superfluous.  As a result, I was frantically trying to delete images while I should have been taking pictures.

Surprisingly, the mother bobcat is still with her young.  All that I’ve read indicates it is rather rare for them to still be interacting with her at their age.  The mother should be going into estrus soon and the adult male has been around a lot and has been busy marking seemingly everything in sight.  However, we may have witnessed the beginnings of the separation between the mother and her young.  Already, the young female spends far more time on her own, but her brother seems slower to mature and he seems to actively seek out the other bobcats.

On Sunday, the mother and her son were lounging apart in a semi-open field enjoying the afternoon sun.  They would actually go back into hiding whenever the sun disappeared behind a large cloud.  The first time we saw the young male approach his mother, she smacked him in the face.  Not very hard, but it certainly wasn’t very welcoming.  He persisted and she relented.  Soon he was snoozing while laying his head on her.  He soon started to annoy her again by putting one of his paws on the back of her head.  After putting up with this for a few minutes, she turned and tried biting his ear.

Lucky for her, he is easily distracted and he went off to hunt.  She relaxed by herself for a few minutes, before heading off to hunt for herself.  She found a likely target and spent many minutes getting into position and sat there motionless, waiting for the perfect time to pounce.  Just as she started quivering in anticipation, the young male walked up to ‘help’ and scared dinner away.  No wonder she isn’t thrilled to have him around!

“Mother and Son”  –  Goleta, CA

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Bobcat – January 9-11, 2010

January 11, 2010

This post contains a small record of our recent encounters with the young female bobcat.  In general, she has been far less visible lately, so we were incredibly lucky over the past few days.  We found her on nearly every day and without too much searching.  Each encounter was unique, although the best was watching her walk right by another person adn then walk straight down the paved path.  We even got to watch her play around with her brother.  Actually, he did most of the playing and tried pouncing on her while she wasn’t paying attention.  It looks like a lot of restoration work is going on around the lake, which may negatively affect the sightings this week.

“Hesitation”  –  Goleta, CA

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Bobcat – January 2, 2010

January 8, 2010

Here are some more bobcat images from the start of the New Year.  Word has been spreading about my bobcat photography and I’ve been hearing from many people about other potential locations.  One of my goals this year is to photograph as many different bobcats as possible, even if that only turns out to be one.

“Young Male Bobcat”  –  Goleta, CA

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Happy New Year!

January 1, 2010

It’s been an incredible year and 2010 should be even better!  I want to thank everyone that takes the time to stop by and especially to those who take the time to comment.  I wish you all the best in the New Year.

The bobcat sightings have continued and I’ve taken some fantastic pictures over the last few days.  Here are a few of my favorites.  If you want to see more, head over to my Flickr page.

“Majestic”  –  Goleta, CA

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