Bobcat family gets a new home in the wild
SRP and Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center (Southwest Wildlife) recently teamed up to release a young family of bobcats to an SRP-managed habitat southeast of the Valley. The bobcat family was previously living in a Scottsdale community, close to developed areas, and were in need of relocation to the wild.
The bobcat family consisted of a mother bobcat and her three kittens who were brought into Southwest Wildlife. The kittens were too small and young to be released when they first arrived, so they were given time to grow and develop in a safe, supportive environment before Southwest Wildlife worked with SRP to identify a suitable area for them to live away from Valley-based communities.
“This particular bobcat family was in the wrong place at the wrong time, and they didn’t have a good place to grow up,” said Kim Carr, Animal Care Manager at Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center. “They needed to be in the wild away from human development.”
In 2020, SRP began a partnership with the Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center to release rehabilitated wild animals on SRP-managed conservation properties. SRP has several different programs for protecting wildlife and has made long-term commitments to implement conservation efforts for more than 15 wildlife species and their habitats. SRP’s nine conservation properties consist of approximately 3,000 acres along several Arizona waterways and upland habitats. These are protected habitats that are well suited for numerous wildlife species.
“We work to preserve and protect these habitats for threatened and endangered species, as well as many other wildlife species that occupy these lands,” said Heather English, Senior Environmental Scientist at SRP.
Animals that SRP and Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center recently released to natural habitats include juvenile coyotes, juvenile foxes, juvenile raccoons and a badger.
“It’s really hard these days to find open habitat and suitable places for wild animals to be released after they have been rehabilitated,” said Carr. “When SRP reached out to us to offer up some of their land for these releases it was amazing. It was almost too good to be true.”
As responsible stewards of Arizona’s natural resources, SRP engages in efforts to protect wildlife and conserve wildlife habitats. In addition to meeting regulatory requirements, SRP understands the importance of protecting Arizona’s native plants and wildlife, especially sensitive and at-risk species.
“It is important we protect these resources for future generations, including the wildlife living in these areas,” said English.
SRP is proud to partner with the Southwest Wildfire Conservation Center which has been in operation since 1994 and has a longstanding reputation as one of the leading wildlife sanctuaries and rehabilitation facilities in the southwestern United States.