DAVIDSON COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) – Bobcats are not unusual in Tennessee, but they are seldom seen in Belle Meade.
That’s why home surveillance of the predatory cat walking across a backyard this weekend is so unusual.
It happened just before dark Saturday evening. The video shows a bobcat, believed to be less than a year old, sauntering across the pool deck of a home.
The house is next door to Shane Tallant, a young father with 2-year-old twins.
“It makes me nervous that we could be out in the yard playing and a bobcat comes across the yard,” explained Tallent.
Tallant also says there have been rumblings of a bobcat in the upscale neighborhood, but no one had seen it until Saturday.
“If you are walking in the yard it would scare anyone, and if you are fearful it may be fearful of you and attack,” Tallent said.
According to National Geographic, bobcats are elusive and nocturnal and can grow up to 35 to 40 pounds.
They are also fierce hunters, usually eating rabbits and squirrels, but they are known to take down prey much bigger than themselves.
“The likelihood of seeing one is small. That’s why this video is so neat. The homeowner who took this is really lucky to see it,” explains Bill Samuels, President of the Florida Panther Project out of Sarasota, Florida.
In the surveillance footage, Belle Meade police are seen patrolling the fence line holding rifles, but they were unable to find the animal.
Tallant is glad that Belle Meade police are taking the sighting seriously, though he doesn’t want the animal hurt.
“I don’t want anything to happen bad to the bobcat, but I don’t want anything bad to happen to a pet or a child,” he said.
Chief Tim Eades of Belle Meade Police Department told News 2 that his has reached out to different agencies regarding the bobcat.
Anyone who sees it should call the Belle Meade police at 615-297-0241.
In the meantime, Samuels says if you encounter a bobcat, don’t run.
“It’s common sense stuff. Don’t turn and run if you see a bobcat. That could trigger an instinct that they don’t have any intention of doing, but that instinct could take over,” Samuels told News 2.
He also says you should make yourself big and intimidating and the animal will usually move along.