Biologists propose removing bobcats from Ohio's threatened species list

photo from ODNR
photo from ODNR

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - Following a rebound of the bobcat population since the 1970s, the The Ohio Wildlife Council has received proposals to remove bobcats from Ohio's threatened species list.

The ODNR Division of Wildlife biologists submitted a proposal to remove the bobcat from Ohio's threatened species list. The bobcat was one of 71 species on Ohio's first endangered list in 1974.

However, the bobcat population began to rebound in the 1970s, and in recent years the number of verified sightings has continued to increase, prompting the status change from endangered to threatened in 2012.

Bobcats are still considered a protected species in Ohio with no hunting or trapping season.

Three other species were proposed to be changed on Ohio's state-designated species. A fourth was added as a species of concern, and this designation does not require council action.

Snowshoe Hares
Now endangered, snowshoe hares were proposed to be changed to a species of concern. Translocated hares have not been detected in Ohio since 2010 as the population has declined.

Bewick's Wren
Presently listed as endangered, the Bewick's wren is proposed to move to extirpated. A Bewick's wren nest was last confirmed in Ohio in 1995.

Smooth Greensnake
Currently a species of concern, the smooth greensnake is proposed to move to the endangered list. This rare snake has lost much of its habitat and range in Ohio.

Eastern Hog-Nosed Snake
The Eastern hog-nosed snake will now be listed as a species of concern in Ohio.

The Ohio Wildlife Council is an eight-member board that approves all of the ODNR Division of Wildlife proposed rules and regulations. The council will vote on the proposed rules and season dates during its April 9 meeting after considering public input.

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