New Study Says Bobcats More Valuable Alive Than As Pelts

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A new study shows tourism dollars generated by a single bobcat are greater than if the same animal is killed for its fur pelt. Because of tighter international laws banning trapping of other spotted cats, the number of bobcats hunted or trapped for their pelts has quadrupled in recent years. Mark Elbroch is Puma Program Lead Scientist for Panthera, a global wild cat conservation organization, and one of the authors of the study. He said hunting and trapping licenses, gasoline and other costs only generate about $400 for the local economy compared to over $300,000 in eco-tourism for a living bobcat. He said the individual bobcat they studied is especially easy to spot in the winter. “They work the Madison River where thermal features keep water...

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