Missouri turkey hunter attacked by bobcat

spectr17

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Missouri turkey hunter attacked by bobcat

Associated Press

5/1/03

AGENCY, Mo. -Even with cuts on his scalp and a slightly bruised eye, Zach Prescher still has a hard time convincing people a bobcat attacked him.

But the 18-year-old Prescher said that's just what happened Saturday when he got between the bobcat and a turkey decoy.

Conservation agent Kyle Carroll received a call from Prescher reporting the attack. Until then, he said he had never heard of a bobcat attacking a human.

Bobcats prey primarily on rabbits, and sometimes turkeys.

"He's got a story he should sell to `Outdoor Life,'" Carroll said.

That story started around 7:30 a.m. Saturday while Prescher was sitting with his back to a tree in a flood plain 200 yards east of the Platte River near Agency, where Prescher lives.

He was in full camouflage, trying to lure in three big tom turkeys with a box call.

His decoy sat 30 yards in front of him, and his shotgun rested in his lap.

The group of toms and two hens were coming up on his right about 40 yards away. Suddenly, the gobblers startled and scurried away. Prescher said he began to turn to the sound of a noise behind him when a bobcat jumped on his head and spun him face down.

"I was yelling. I didn't know what was going on," Prescher said. "He'd pulled my face mask over my eyes."

Prescher pushed the bobcat off his head. The cat then swatted him in the face, narrowly missing his left eye. Prescher bolted and the animal disappeared into the thick brush as he squeezed off a shot.

Arleasha Mays, news service coordinator for the Missouri Department of Conservation in Jefferson City, said she could find no record of a bobcat attacking a human - ever.

Prescher guessed the bobcat was going for the decoy and didn't notice him sitting motionless in his camouflage until he moved his head.

Carroll said the theory made sense.

"(The bobcat probably) hit him and as soon as it realized he wasn't a turkey, it took off," Carroll said.

Prescher said even his dad didn't believe the story at first.

"Everybody I've talked to can't believe it happened," he said.

But he said he has a ripped fleece coat with bobcat hair on it to convince nonbelievers.
 

Welby

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I almost had that happen to me once. I didn't think anyone would ever believe me either until I read a similar story in Field & Stream magazine.

Since then, I've had at least one more bobcat come in to my turkey calling. Thankfully, no scratches to show yet.
 

GuidesForHire

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that story in field and stream happened in southern VT to Larry McCloud, who we know. he was pretty tore up.
 

Tinhorn

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I'm sure bobcats come in to turkey calls all the time but we usually don't see them. One friend calls in coyotes all the time with his calls, the last hunt he went on (he's passed away now) he had a coyote Growl at him from behind and he said that was the 3rd one that growled at him over the years. Funny but all i've ever noticed calling in is mostly other hunters (seems like) and Gobblers


Tinhorn
 


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