GRANVILLE, OHIO (January 19, 2021) A pilot study to assess the presence/absence of bobcats, red fox, gray fox, and coyotes within Licking County was recently led by Dr. Shauna L. Weyrauch of the Ohio State University at Newark. Bobcats (Lynx rufus) in particular were of interest as they are a recovering species in Ohio after being extirpated in the mid-1800s. Currently little is known about their abundance and distribution within Licking County, which sits on the north-west edge of their range. Multiple parks managed by the Licking Park District were selected for observation using non-baited camera trapping stations set up along game trails.
Results revealed bobcat sightings at two locations, Taft Reserve North and Reese Wildlife Sanctuary, out of the eight parks/reserves surveyed. The absence of sightings at six of the monitored locations may indicate bobcats are still relatively rare in Licking County and/or that they avoid parks with a higher rate of recreational use. Other predatory species observed included coyotes at multiple parks and red fox at Infirmary Mound Park. Gray fox were not photo captured at any site. It should be emphasized that the presence of these species does not represent a danger to visitors to the parks. The hope is that this preliminary study will be followed by future surveys of bobcat occupancy in the coming years.
To view the full report and list of observed mammal species, please
Licking Park District’s Mission
The mission of the Licking Park District (LPD) is to acquire, manage, preserve, and conserve natural areas within Licking County, while protecting wildlife and local history in a manner that enriches our communities and provides access to diverse parks, educational opportunities, and health and wellness activities.
The Licking Park District manages over 1,600 acres of parkland on 12 sites and manages over 46 miles of paved multi-use trails across Licking County. The Licking Park District office, located at Infirmary Mound Park, is easily accessed from Rt. 37. Visit the website www.lickingparkdistrict.com to see all the programs and opportunities your Licking Park District offers.