You may not see lions or tigers roaming across the state, but other wild cats live here. Learn more about what species you may see in Colorado, how to identify these felines, and ways to keep your pets safe from these potential predators.
Do Bobcats Live in Colorado?
Bobcats live throughout much of North America, and that includes Colorado. From far away, bobcats and their kittens could easily be mistaken for pet cats. Bobcats are, however, roughly twice the size of domesticated cats. Adults weigh between 11 and 30 pounds. A bobcat’s most distinguishing feature is the black tuft of fur that extends above the tip of the ears.
Are There Lynx in CO?
Yes, lynx also reside in the Centennial State. Colorado’s lynx population was almost extinct by the mid-1990s. Wildlife officials relocated cats from Alaska and Canada to help boost the local population.
Today, wildlife officials continues to monitor the number of lynx that live in the state. If you see a lynx, Colorado Parks & Wildlife want to hear about it. You can help this organization by submitting a Lynx Sighting Form.
It’s not always easy to distinguish a lynx from a bobcat or even a larger domestic cat. If you’re unsure about what kind of cat you see, look at the feline’s paws and tail. Lynx have larger feet that look out of proportion to the rest of their bodies. Conversely, their tails appear shorter than a bobcat’s. And, lynx tails have a black tip.
Are There Panthers in Colorado?
Panthers are also called pumas, catamounts, and mountain lions. Whatever name you call these wild cats, they live in Colorado. Unlike a lynx or bobcat, you won’t mistake a panther for a house cat. Adults panthers weigh approximately 140 pounds and have short, brown fur.
What Do Colorado Wild Cat Paw Prints Look Like?
Tracks in the mud or snow may be your only indication that wild cats live in the area. The bobcat, lynx, and panther all have distinctive paw prints that allow you to tell them apart.
The 5 Ways To Keep Your Pets Safe From Colorado Wild Cats
Wild cats can’t distinguish between wild prey and your beloved house pet. Bobcats, panthers, and lynx can attack dogs and cats.
You don’t have to live in fear or keep your pets indoors 24/7. Understanding a wild cat’s behavior can prevent an encounter with one. Here are 5 ways you can keep your pet safe from wild felines.
Living in Harmony with Colorado Wild Cats
Bobcats, panthers, and lynx all have a presence in Colorado. But you shouldn’t be afraid to enjoy the outdoors with your cat or dog. Keep your pets on a leash and take walks during daylight hours. If you see a wild cat, make noise to scare it off.
Featued Image Credit: Jimmydaly, Shutterstock