SANTA MONICA, CALIFORNIA – Wildlife ecologist Joanne Moriarty noticed very familiar movements earlier this spring with Bobcat-339 in the Santa Monica Mountains of California.
Bobcats are nomadic in nature, which mean they roam all over the mountains throughout the day and night. GPS data revealed that 339 repeatedly returned to one particular spot, a characteristic that indicates “denning,” which normally happens after a female gives birth.
Moriarty explored the situation and found a cute spotted surprise nestled in a woodrat nest: bobcat kittens!
It was more like finding a needle in a haystack, Moriarty stated, but thanks to the data from 339’s GPS, the scientists were able to mark an approximate location among multiple woodrat nests, a common hub for bobcat dens.
[fbvideo link=”https://www.facebook.com/santamonicamtns/videos/10153698030598660/” width=”700″ height=”380″ onlyvideo=”1″]
Once they heard what they suspected were bobcat kitten noises deep inside one nest, they attached a GoPro to a selfie stick and began to probe inside, revealing two newborn bobcat kittens: B-340 and B-341.
The video was recently released on social media from the observations which were recorded earlier in April.
The team gathered samples and measurements of the newborn brothers, placed ear tags, returned them to the den and then set up a camera trap to monitor for the mother’s return.
Eventually, the feline family moved out of the den to roam the mountains.