SAVING THE MEXICAN BOBCAT
Intrepid, adaptable predators, bobcats are solitary hunters who stalk and ambush their prey using patience, speed, and precision. Yet these stealthy felines are no match for the development rapidly destroying their habitat nor the poaching brought about through the high demands of the international fur trade.
Although bobcat pelts have been illegally transported from Mexico into the United States, Mexico hasn’t done a census to show how many Mexican bobcats have been trapped, shot, or poisoned. Nobody knows what that means for the species’ future.
Mexican bobcats, the smallest and southernmost subspecies of bobcat, have been protected under the Endangered Species Act since 1976. Under pressure from the National Trappers Association, the Bush administration proposed their delisting — an action that would legalize the importation of Mexican bobcat furs into the United States. We twice submitted scientific comments that helped these wild cats keep their crucial U.S. safeguards, and we’re ready to step in again if needed.
In 2023 we petitioned Mexico’s environmental ministry to protect these beautiful bobcats under the country’s list of species at risk. That would mean any actions threatening Mexican bobcats would require population monitoring and management plans. More monitoring would provide better information about the species’ status and help ensure that hunting and the U.S. border wall don’t threaten the cats’ survival.