“Bobcats” visited the Perry Public Library on Thursday, Dec. 7. The program, hosted by Cindy Blobaum or “Critter Cindy” of Dallas County Conservation took place in the library’s large meeting room.
Blobaum presented on three specific species of cats: house cat, bobcat, and mountain lion, later showcased the skulls of to audience members.
“Cats don’t chew, they rip and gulp,” Blobaum explained while passing around the skull of a house cat. “You’ll notice cats are always looking forward and they have really good hunting vision.”
The gender of the cat can also be identified by the texture of the skull, Blobaum says.
“On the top of the skull, this doesn’t work with every animal but it works with cats,” Blobaum said. “This part right here, it’s flat and goes back pretty far, it’s a girl cat.”
“If it [cat] has a ridge up on top [of the skull], you can feel the ridge, it is a boy cat.”
Blobaum passed around the fur of the a bobcat, which averages around three feet in length, according to information from the Iowa DNR website.
According to the Iowa DNR website, the bobcat, lynx and mountain lion population make up the group of wildcat species native to Iowa.
“Back in the 1970’s we were losing our population and it became restricted [that] you could not hunt them,” Blobaum said. “They have rebounded and now it is legal to trap them in 33 of Iowa’s counties because you only find them in 33 of Iowa’s counties.”
The trapping season runs from Nov. 5 to Jan. 31, according to the Iowa DNR website, and bobcats can be found in the southern part of Iowa and along the western edge.
“They don’t like to cross farm fields, they like hills [and] they look wooded areas,” Blobaum said.
Children’s Librarian, Suzanne Kestel, has brought in Blobaum as a speaker before.
“I think Cindy does such a great job,” Kestel said.
After the program subsided, a taxidermy bobcat was brought out for audience members to see up close.