Since February, there have been reported sightings of a bobcat in Waterford. The most recent was on Sunday, Sept. 2. Teresa Wilensky was preparing for a family barbeque on her back deck off Melanie Drive when she saw what has become known as "the Cross Road bobcat," walking through her yard.
“He was just walking around slowly, hunting, looking for his own dinner,” Wilensky said. “He was beautiful.”
Wilensky, whose children are now at least high school age and who doesn’t have any pets, said she isn’t scared about the bobcat at all. Instead, she said she now feels like “part of the 'in' crowd,” as she is one of several people to see the bobcat off Cross Road.
“If my kids were still little, I’d probably be nervous,” Wilensky said. “But they aren’t, and I don’t have any pets. So I think it is awesome, I think it is very cool.”
In February, Waterford Patch had an article about most likely the same bobcat after it was spotted and photographed by William Porter on Springdale Road. Springdale Road is also off Cross Road and very close to Melanie Drive.
It hasn't been spotted anywhere else as far as we know, but if you see a bobcat or any other interesting critter in your backyard in East Lyme, Old Lyme or Lyme, post a picture on Pics and Clips!
According to a fact sheet by the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, bobcat sightings should not cause any alarm. According to the DEEP, “bobcat attacks on people are virtually unknown,” although they do pose a small threat to livestock and domestic cats.
Bobcats are solitary animals – meaning most likely the bobcat the Wilenskys saw is the same bobcat Porter saw – that hunt alone in thick cover, according to the DEEP. They have outstanding hearing and vision, and hide patiently and then ambush their prey, according to the DEEP.
Bobcats target smaller animals like squirrels and rabbits, although they occasionally attack deer, DEEP says. It is illegal to kill a bobcat, and bobcats almost never spread disease to other animals or humans, according to the DEEP.
“Problems caused by bobcats are too infrequent to justify efforts to reduce populations,” the DEEP's website reads. “Conflicts should be addressed on an individual basis and can often be remedied by preventative methods such as fencing."