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DNR raises bobcat harvest quota for the 2017-18 seasonSubmitted: 08/16/2017
Katie Thoresen
Katie Thoresen
Senior Producer
kthoresen@wjfw.com

DNR raises bobcat harvest quota for the 2017-18 season
RHINELANDER - DNR Furbearer Research Scientist Dr. Nathan Roberts calls bobcats "a conservation success story."
Their population numbers are up across the United States.

The DNR doubled the harvest quota this year at 750 bobcats because of that healthy population size.

"While the population's grown, we've also increased our understanding of bobcats considerably. Working together with hunters and trappers across the state we've increased our understanding of bobcats and our ability to monitor bobcats," said Roberts.


The DNR estimates there are about 3,500 bobcats in the Northern Zone, which is the area north of highway 64. 

Roberts started radio-collaring bobcats three years ago to get a better understanding of the population size and bobcat habits. 

"We're able to track mortality rates, harvest mortality rates, and get ideas of population densities," said Roberts. "All this information feeds into population models and gives us some idea of how the population's doing."

The Furbearer Advisory Committee reviews that research along with harvest and survey data to make harvest recommendations. 

"We want to provide opportunities for consumptive use, which is hunting and trapping, but we want to do that in a way that ensures that we can do it again the next year, and the next year, and the next year. We want it to be sustainable," said Roberts.

Hunters and trappers will be notified by mid-September if they'll received a permit.

The bobcat hunting and trapping season beings October 15. 

If you catch a bobcat, you must register it by phone and in person. 


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