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Valhalla Student Catches Bobcat On Camera

Town of Mount Pleasant Councilman Nicholas DiPaolo took several photos of this bobcat crossing his backyard off Warren Avenue in Hawthorne on Sunday afternoon, triggering more reports of bobcat sightings this year across the Hudson Valley Region.
Town of Mount Pleasant Councilman Nicholas DiPaolo took several photos of this bobcat crossing his backyard off Warren Avenue in Hawthorne on Sunday afternoon, triggering more reports of bobcat sightings this year across the Hudson Valley Region. Photo Credit: Provided/Nicholas DiPaolo
11-year-old Sofia Alvarez of North Castle took a photo of a bobcat from the road near North White Plains on Feb. 28. She will be a student at Valhalla Middle School in the fall.
11-year-old Sofia Alvarez of North Castle took a photo of a bobcat from the road near North White Plains on Feb. 28. She will be a student at Valhalla Middle School in the fall. Photo Credit: Provided/Sophia Alvarez

This story has been updated.

WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y.  -- This week's sighting of a bobcat in Hawthorne triggered new reports of bobcats captured on cameras or phones near North White Plains and Carmel.

Liesa Alvarez, who lives in the Quarry Heights section of North Castle, said her 11-year-old daughter, Sofia, took a photo of a bobcat from the road near North White Plains on Feb. 28. (See attached image of it atop a snowy slope.)

"It's blurry, but she captured the bobcat that had been by our house a few days earlier,'' Alvarez said. "Bobcats are indeed in our area. Lots of wildlife around here for them to feast on."

In a followup email, Alvarez wrote: "We never heard about or saw a bobcat again. We are North Castle with Valhalla schools. Vikings, not Bobcats. :)"

Alvarez contacted Daily Voice after Town of Mount Pleasant Councilman Nicholas DiPaolo reported sighting a bobcat about 3 p.m. on Sunday in his backyard at 140 Warren Ave. in Hawthorne.

"It wandered into the woods east of Warren Avenue and a short while later several deer came running out of the woods," DiPaolo said, capturing the bobcat on his camera.

DiPaolo said the bobcat was about four feet long with a spotted underside and beige coat. "An absolutely beautiful animal,'' he said. "But I wasn't about to get too close."

Kiley Blackman of Tuckahoe, founder of Animal Defenders of Westchester (ADOW), said, "Bobcats are small, approximately 20 pounds.  Their primary diet is rats and mice -- they shy away from humans in the wild."

Another bobcat was videotaped on an iPhone by a family in Putnam County on July 10. You can read about that Carmel sighting here.

In October 2014, several residents of the Town of Greenburgh reported seeing a bobcat, and an Ardsley woman photographed it.

In February 2012, two people called Mount Pleasant police when they spotted what may have been bobcat on Heritage Drive in Pleasantville. And in 2013, a bobcat sighting was reported in Chappaqua.

"People need to leave them alone. Non-human animals have a right to live on this earth same as human animals,'' ADOW's Blackman added. "They are beautiful animals hunted for their pelts and mere thrill-killing trophy hunters."

"The number of people and cars increases every day; we have to stop acting like the bullies of the earth. We are lucky to catch a glimpse of wildlife and people have to stop irrational fears and start acting humanely,'' Blackman said.

"There is an active business of bobcat breeders and some people keep them as pets," Blackman said Thursday. "They are disrupted from their habitats because of human encroachment and its destruction of all habitat in its path."

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