Brett Blume (@brettblumekmox)By Brett Blume

ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – There are recent reports of a bobcat being spotted in a south St. Louis neighborhood.

The Wildlife Rescue Center has been called to the Holly Hills neighborhood on three different occasions to investigate the bobcat reports.

Executive Director Kim Rutledge says they receive calls like this a few times every year, and often it turns out to be a case of mistaken identity.

“Most of the time when someone calls us and says that they have seen either a bobcat, or sometimes people even believe that they’ve seen a mountain lion, at least half the time when they send us a photo it ends up just being a domestic cat,” Rutledge says.

But she’s definitely not closing the door to the possibility, adding that it’s more a case of humans encroaching on the bobcat’s territory than the other way around.

“They really don’t have a whole lot of choice except to enter populated areas every once in a while,” Rutledge says. “It’s because they have less and less land to do their thing completely unseen.”

She describes bobcats as “really secretive and elusive,” and a very minor threat to humans.

Small dogs, cats or other pets, however, are a different story.

“Anyone who has small pets should be taking their animals out on a leash anyway,” Rutledge says. “There are definitely situations where wild animals can mistake our very small pets as either prey or as competition.”

Again, no confirmation yet one way or another, but there are reports that a bobcat may be loose in the Holly Hills neighborhood.

Rutledge says they would welcome any photo or video confirmation.

“Getting to see a bobcat is a cool experience,” she says, adding that bobcat sightings are more rare than those of foxes or coyotes in this area.

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