Do Bobcats Eat Deer? (Interesting Facts)

Disclaimer: The information presented below is for general informational & educational purposes only. Always consult with animal professionals in case of specific concerns.

Bobcats are such interesting creatures.

They’re shy and elusive, but also fierce predators.

I was always curious about what they ate, so I did some research and found out some really interesting facts.

For example, did you know that bobcats will sometimes eat deer?

Keep reading to find out more fascinating facts about the diet of these beautiful animals.

So, Do Bobcats Prey On And Eat Deer?

The answer is yes, bobcats do prey on and eat deer.

In fact, deer make up a large part of their diet.

Bobcats will hunt and kill deers that are sick or weak, and they’re also known to take down healthy adult deer.

The type of deer that bobcats typically eat includes white-tailed deer, mule deer, and black-tailed deer.

While bobcats do eat deer, they don’t typically hunt them down.

Instead, they wait for the opportunity to scavenge a deer that’s already been killed by another predator or that has died of natural causes.

Bobcats will also eat carrion (rotting flesh) if they come across it.

How Big Of A Deer Can A Bobcat Eat?

While bobcats will eat all different sizes of deer, they typically prey on smaller deers that are around the same size as they are.

This means that a bobcat can usually take down a deer that’s between 30 and 50 pounds.

However, bobcats have been known to kill and eat deer that weigh up to 100 pounds.

So, Why Do Bobcats Eat Deer?

There are a few different reasons why bobcats might eat deer.

One reason is that deer are a plentiful source of food.

Another reason is that deer are relatively easy to catch.

And finally, deer are a good source of protein and other nutrients that bobcats need to survive.

In addition to eating deer, bobcats also eat rabbits, rodents, birds, reptiles, and amphibians.

They will also eat carrion if they come across it.

Bobcats typically hunt at night and use their powerful sense of smell to track down their prey.

Do Bobcats Eat All Parts Of A Deer’s Body?

No, bobcats are not scavengers and only eat the parts of a deer’s body that they deem edible.

This typically includes the meat, organs, and blood.

Bobcats have very sharp claws and teeth which allow them to easily tear through meat and skin.

They also have a strong digestive system which allows them to digest bones and other hard tissues.

What Sounds Do Bobcats Make When They Are Hunting?

There are many different sounds that bobcats make, depending on what they are doing.

When they are hunting, they make a low hissing sound that is designed to scare their prey.

They may also make a high-pitched meowing sound when they are trying to get the attention of their prey.

This sound is very different from the meowing sound that cats make when they are asking for food or attention.

Do Female Bobcats Hunt Differently From Male Bobcats?

do bobcats eat deer

Bobcats can exhibit a great deal of variation in how they kill their prey, depending on their sex and individual personalities.

However, due to their different appearances, there are some general differences between the ways female and male bobcats hunt.

Generally speaking, female bobcats are more opportunistic hunters than males.

They will take advantage of any opportunity that arises to catch prey, whether it is stalking a small animal in the open or scavenging from a carcass.

Male bobcats, on the other hand, are more likely to pursue prey actively, using stealth and cunning to stalk their targets before making a kill.

This difference in hunting style may be because male bobcats need to provide for larger families than females.

The males have to be more efficient hunters to provide enough food for their offspring.

Another key difference between the hunting habits of female and male bobcats is that females are more likely to scavenge from human-influenced sources like garbage dumps and livestock carcasses.

This may be because female bobcats need more calories than males to nurse their young.

Male bobcats are not generally as reliant on scavenging as females, since they can kill prey much larger than themselves.

Do Bobcats Steal From Other Predators?

Yes, bobcats are known to steal food from other predators.

This can include stealing prey from coyotes and bears.

They are very resourceful and can scavenge for food even when other sources are unavailable.

Bobcats will also get in a fight with mountain lion – a prey that is much larger than themselves, which allows them to take advantage of different food opportunities.

Can Bobcats Survive In Urban Areas?

Yes, bobcats can live in captivity and in urban areas.

They are becoming increasingly common in suburban and even urban areas.

This is likely due to the increase in available food sources in these areas.

Bobcats are very adaptable and can thrive in a variety of different environments.

They are also relatively secretive, which allows them to avoid contact with humans.

How To Stop Bobcats From Attacking Your Deer

If you want to protect your deer from bobcats, there are six important steps to take.

  • Make sure your property is properly fenced in. Though bobcats can also climb fences, it will keep bobcats out and deter them from entering in the first place.
  • Install motion detector lights around your property. The sudden light will startle any bobcat that is trying to get close to your deer.
  • Keep a close eye on your deer at all times, especially during dusk and dawn when they are most vulnerable.
  • Bring in your livestock at night. If bobcats know there is no food available, they will be less likely to hunt on your property.
  • Employ a guard dog. A big, mean dog will scare away any bobcat that comes near.
  • If all else fails, use bait to trap the bobcat. This should only be used as a last resort, as it is not a humane solution.

By following these six steps, you can help keep your deer safe from bobcats and other predators.


In summary, bobcats do hunt and eat deer, but this is not generally their preferred prey.

They are very adaptable predators and can survive in a variety of different environments.

There are several things you can do to deter bobcats from attacking your deer, including properly fencing in your property, installing motion detector lights, and keeping a close eye on your deer.

If all else fails, you can trap and euthanize the bobcat.