DEEP CREEK — It’s no Bigfoot sighting, but a rarity nonetheless.
Deep Creek resident Michelle Macri Kloese woke early Sunday to find a wild young bobcat stalking a squirrel on top of the lanai screen of her porch.
Depending on who you are rooting for, the video does have a happy ending. Spoiler: the squirrel gets away.
“Oh my gosh,” Kloese, who was unavailable for comment, said in the video. “I have never seen anything like that before.”
It’s uncommon for bobcats to interact with human habitations, according to Callie Stahl, Peace River Wildlife Center executive director.
“Typically, bobcats do everything in their power to avoid humans. I think this was a juvenile … under a year old,” Stahl said. “But, when you’re a hungry young bobcat, and you don’t have experience with people, you might go out of your way to get a meal.”
Stahl estimates the bobcat in the video weighs between 20 to 25 pounds, but it’s hard to tell because there’s no way of knowing if it was male or female. Adult male bobcats can weigh anywhere between 35 to 40 pounds, females between 20 to 30 pounds.
The video had garnered more than 200 shares and 70 comments as of Monday afternoon as it made its way around Facebook.
“OMG! This is getting so much bigger than I could imagine! I thought a few FB friends would get a kick out of it and now it’s being shared all over,” wrote Kloese in the post.
Comments from followers ranged from concern for the squirrel, concern for the screen and one opinion that simply read, “Get the salt gun.”
“I’m scared to watch it all … does the squirrel get away? I don’t want to watch to see him get it,” wrote Shelley Radick Hunter in a comment on the post.
“What a view!! Did you worry his claws were going to tear the screen??,” wrote Jane Mahler in a comment.
“We sure did lol!! Sounded like he was shredding it but it (the screen) is fine,” responded Kloese.
For residents concerned about similar encounters, Stahl said it is very uncommon to hear of a bobcat attacking a human being. In instances where one might, a human is usually doing something they shouldn’t, such as feeding the animal or interacting with the young.
“Just leave them alone and watch from a distance and enjoy the beauty of nature,” Stahl said. “Be happy that we have these beautiful animals with us in existence.”