Have you seen bobcats in Plano, Allen, or Richardson? In the past, I have received 3 or 4 calls a year about bobcats and how to run them off from a given area. Since July, I have talked to 6 different people from Allen, Plano, and Richardson about this subject. I will go out on a limb and say that some of these folks are seeing the same cat. That may seem like a bold statement, but since a female bobcat’s area is 5 to 7 square mile range, the odds are good it is the same critter.
The question I get is what product is needed to run them out of their backyard. The short answer is that there is no product (firearms not included) that will accomplish this task. The products that folks are looking for are predator scents. As a rule predator scents do not work on other predators. Yes, coyotes will try and prey on bobcats but they are not the number 1 predator. Hawks, owls, and man are the prime predators of the bobcat. Since they live amongst us, they know what we smell like and they consider us a minor threat. Bobcats will make our backyards home because they are a protected environment, specifically from an aerial attack.
So, the question remains, how do you get a bobcat to leave the backyard? Altering the environment is the answer. Remember that all wildlife needs food, water, and shelter. Start by taking the bird feeders down, empty the birdbath, any food or water bowls, fountains, and trim the bushes. Decks and sheds should have welded wire attached so wildlife cannot gain access under them. If you have a pool, well, good luck. Motion sensing exterior lights will also make it uncomfortable for most wildlife. If you see them in the yard, turn on the sprinklers. It is acceptable to yell at them, throw things at them or beat 2 pans together to make noise. The bottom line is that you try to make the environment so unpleasant, that they go to your neighbors.
Under no circumstances do you approach a bobcat. They should be considered a 30-pound runaway chainsaw and they can carry rabies. That means that the use of pepper spray or turning the water hose on them is a bad idea.