Home video captured a rare bobcat sighting on Raquette Lake in the Adirondacks.
"Because they're secretive people don't observe them frequently. There's a certain mystique with bobcats that trappers, hunters want the opportunity to harvest the animal to have that memory," said Paul Jenson of the New York Department of Environmental Conservation.
The statewide population is around 5,000. The DEC says it continues to grow and could handle increased hunting and trapping opportunities. The department has proposed a five-year plan that would expand the seasons for the elusive cats. The biggest changes involve hunting regulations in the southern part of the state. Here in the Adirondacks, the only change would be extending the hunting season by two months.
"The primary change would be that hunters and trappers would be able to hunt and trap bobcats from Oct. 25 through Feb. 15," Jenson said.
On average, about 500 bobcats are captured each year. The DEC estimates that fewer than 100 additional bobcats would be killed each year if their plan takes effect.
"I think it is a mistake," said Steve Hall, who operates the Adirondack Wildlife Refuge in Wilmington.
Hall and his wife are caring for two bobcats that cannot survive alone in the wild. They question the DEC proposal, saying that it is more in response to the population expanding its territory, not necessarily a rapid growth in numbers.
"We think this is a cause for celebration, not additional harvesting," Hall said.
And Hall also points out one of the three main objectives of the DEC plan is to ensure all outdoor enthusiasts enjoy the elusive bobcat when spotted.
"What they say is they want the entire public to enjoy the bobcats, but other than hunters and trappers, every other person like wildlife naturalists, photographers, what they want are living bobcats, not dead bobcats," Hall said.
The DEC is accepting comments on the bobcat management plan through Feb. 16. You can submit your comments to email@example.com and slug email bobcat plan or mail to NYSDEC, Bobcat Management Plan, 625 Broadway, Albany, NY 12233-4754.
Sunday, May 19 2013 12:06 AM EDT2013-05-19 04:06:03 GMT
Vermont State Police have charged 22-year-old Adam Page of Newport for stealing the Newport City Elementary School bus, which has now been declared totaled. A stolen dog was also recovered in the busMore >>
State Police say he is also being charged with the theft of two other vehicles and a woman's dog.More >>
Saturday, May 18 2013 11:45 PM EDT2013-05-19 03:45:20 GMT
State police are looking for the person responsible for stealing a school bus and taking it for a joyride in northern Vermont. Troopers say the 2014-model bus belonging Newport City Elementary SchoolMore >>
Police say the school bus belonging to the Newport City Elementary School was taken for a joy ride Friday night.More >>
Saturday, May 18 2013 10:10 PM EDT2013-05-19 02:10:53 GMT
A fatal accident in Lyndon Saturday. It happened around 2:30 Saturday afternoon on Route 122. Police say 76-year-old Gerda Blaszczyk of St. Johnsbury swerved to avoid an animal. Her car travelled up anMore >>
Police say the driver swerved to avoid an animal.More >>
Saturday, May 18 2013 8:03 PM EDT2013-05-19 00:03:45 GMT
Senator Bernie Sanders is touring the state this weekend with a special guest. Sanders and the Danish Ambassabdor to the United States are hosting town hall meetings in Burlington, Brattleboro and Montpelier. TheMore >>
Sanders and the Danish Ambassabdor to the United States are hosting town hall meetings.More >>
Saturday, May 18 2013 7:56 PM EDT2013-05-18 23:56:03 GMT
Saturday marked a new beginning for Castleton State College students. "Were all gathered here, getting fired up, having a good time," explained Castleton graduate, David Carrier. The 500 graduates hadMore >>
It's graduation day for the class of 20-13 at Castleton State College. And just for the occasion, the college invited back an alumnus with a strong connection to the school.More >>
Saturday, May 18 2013 7:51 PM EDT2013-05-18 23:51:14 GMT
Young bikers were learning the rules of the road in South Burlington Saturday. Kids who brought their bikes to the Dorset St. Park received free checks for their brakes, chains, and tires. Helmets alsoMore >>
and much more... making sure kids are safe before they hit the roads this summer.More >>
Saturday, May 18 2013 7:49 PM EDT2013-05-18 23:49:26 GMT
On a sun-soaked Saturday, Karen Trayah and her dogs enjoyed the sights, sounds, and of course smells of a festival for fidos. "It's called Woofstock, however, this is our 1st year doing it here at theMore >>
Making sure our furry friends have a place to call home.More >>
Friday, May 17 2013 7:54 PM EDT2013-05-17 23:54:10 GMT
The door to room 118 at the Liberty Inn and Suites is gone-- busted by police during an early morning drug raid. They say tenant Julie Herron, 41, was selling heroin out her room. She was living thereMore >>
A South Burlington drug bust exposed new abuses of the state's homeless voucher program. A couple was arrested for selling heroin out of their motel room, and police say the state was footing the bill for their stay.More >>