Many factors influence bobcat (Lynx rufus) space use, movements and habitat selection, including prey distribution and density, season, breeding behaviors and intraspecific relationships. Knowledge of ranging behaviors and habitat selection is required to understand population dynamics and ecology of bobcats within temperate ecosystems. We radio-monitored 58 adult bobcats from 1989–1997 in central Mississippi. Males maintained larger home ranges and core areas than females, but sizes of these areas did not vary seasonally. Male bobcats moved at greater rates than females and bobcats moved at greatest rates during nocturnal periods. Movement rates were greatest during winter. Habitat selection at three spatial scales differed between genders and across seasons within gender. Our findings suggest that ≤8 y-old pine (Pinus spp.) habitats are important to bobcats, particularly females, as these habitats were selected by females at all spatial scales. However, our data also indicate that mature (>30 y) pine habitats are important to bobcats on our study area.
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Vol. 149 • No. 2