VIDEO: Is it a Mountain Lion or Bobcat?

August 15, 2014 8:00 am · 96 comments

This video was taken in Clayton very early on Thursday morning.

The homeowner, who lives on Marsh Creek Rd. in Clayton says “whatever it is, it has killed 4 of my roosters and 3 hens over 10 days”.

The person who took the video can’t tell whether or not it’s a mountain lion or bobcat, and wants to know what everything thinks.

The container the animal is drinking out of is 10.5″ tall.

So, Claycordians, what do you think? Is it a mountain lion or bobcat?

1 New to the area August 15, 2014 at 8:11 AM

I haven’t lived in Claycord very long, but I’m pretty sure that’s a corn snake.

2 Widowmaker2213 August 15, 2014 at 8:16 AM

Can’t see a tail. I’m thinking bobcat..

3 Wildlife Biologist August 15, 2014 at 8:16 AM

It’s clearly a corn snake. Or possibly a Chupacabra.

4 hmmm August 15, 2014 at 8:18 AM

I dont see a vide only commercial

5 DJ August 15, 2014 at 8:18 AM

Large neighborhood cat

6 Cattus Felinus Tailus Nogot'em August 15, 2014 at 8:19 AM

Bobcats are relatively compact with proportionately short limbs, and are comparatively shaggy. They also have a stubby tail (hence the name “bobcat” because of the ‘bobbed” tail).
Mountain lions are longer-limbed and visually smoother than a bobcat.
That being said, given the quality of the video, and the contortion of the creature, it’s nearly impossible to tell.

7 Enfield303 August 15, 2014 at 8:24 AM

It’s hard to tell without seeing its tail. I’m leaning towards mountain lion based on the sleek short hair. But then what do I know, I’ve never seen either one up close.

8 I'd say Bob Cat August 15, 2014 at 8:24 AM

the markings, most noticeable on the front legs; are indicative of a Bob Cat.

Mountain Lions, typically do not have such markings.

9 Jess August 15, 2014 at 8:26 AM

Stripes on the front legs, no visible tail, smaller size = bobcat

10 Overwhelmed August 15, 2014 at 8:27 AM

That is one very thirsty beautiful mountain lion.

11 Shasta Daisy August 15, 2014 at 8:28 AM

My guess, a bobcat.

Bobcats have a short bobtail that’s about five inches long.
Mountain lions have a long and cylindrical tail with a dark tip. The tail is usually 30 to 36 inches long.

12 ale August 15, 2014 at 8:28 AM

Mountain lion

bobcats are much smaller (more like a raccoon)

13 marinemom August 15, 2014 at 8:28 AM

Looks like a mountain Lion to me.

14 Cherrywood August 15, 2014 at 8:32 AM

That’s a bobcat. Mountain Loins have very long tails and at the end on the video you can see the short tail of a bobcat. I believe bobcat’s can weigh up to 40 plus pounds.

15 Marianne August 15, 2014 at 8:33 AM

Definitely a mountain lion. Did anyone get a close-up shot?

16 Ranger August 15, 2014 at 8:39 AM

Mountain Lion. No doubt about it!

17 Dr. Jellyfinger® August 15, 2014 at 8:40 AM

Well…… it could be a lion that lost it’s tail somehow, or perhaps a hi-bred. Maybe a 1/3 bobcat, 1/3 mountain lion & 1/3 coon cat….. but unless I’m a totally ignorant, tenderfoot, know nothing, hippie city boy…. it’s just a BOBCAT!

18 Silva August 15, 2014 at 8:42 AM

Gorgeous mountain lion, tail’s tucked under.

19 anon August 15, 2014 at 8:44 AM

face shape; looks like mt. lion
body shape; long limbs in proportion to body, mt. lion
as for the tail it could be wrapped around his other side.
he’s more long than stumpy like a bobcat. and don’t bobcat’s have more significant markings allover?

20 Anon777 August 15, 2014 at 8:44 AM

WHAT HAPPENED with the Oakhurst possible suicide??? Why no update? Why can’t you still READ the comments, even if you cannot post one?

21 anon August 15, 2014 at 8:46 AM

i dunno, see what lindsey wildlife says

22 anon August 15, 2014 at 8:48 AM
23 Duh August 15, 2014 at 8:51 AM

Here’s what a mountain lion looks like in a night video:

24 anon August 15, 2014 at 8:55 AM

alright, i’m calling in the specialists

25 Chris K August 15, 2014 at 8:57 AM

I checked, and it is at least possible for mountain Lions and bob cats to cross breed. But rare. If I had to guess I would say bob cat, just by the , markings and size. However, younger mountain lions can have different markings. So young mountain lion or bob cat is my final two answers. Third would be a cross breed… Wish I could post a photo comment to show some possibilities… Still cool video!!! We have got a lot of wild life, but no mountain lion. Yet… Soon… They are a lot lately.. Watch your small kids and dogs… Seriously..

26 Gary Bogus August 15, 2014 at 8:59 AM

It’s a Diablo Mountain Manx!

You mountain lion people are just kidding right?

A. A skinny little bobcat.

27 Anne Moss August 15, 2014 at 8:59 AM

It’s a BobLion

28 Antler August 15, 2014 at 9:02 AM

I am guessing domestic cat. Considering the height given for the water bowl, it really does not seem to be a larger member of the cat family

Otherwise…. If I HAVE to choose between the other options…… The lovely sleekness of its short coat is that of a mountain lion. (And the cheeks do not have the long bushy points of a bobcat, either.)

It looks healthy! Thanks to the person who is leaving water out and who shared the video. Please send more to Mayor!

29 anon August 15, 2014 at 9:17 AM

I think it’s my neighbors pet Bob, the mountain lion cat.

30 Cynic August 15, 2014 at 9:23 AM

Genetically impossible to be 1/3 anything, at least not until something has selectively bred for at least 3 generations. My guess is a Mountain Lion with the tail tucked underneath for balance. Were there any footprints?

31 Sacto Rob August 15, 2014 at 9:29 AM

Juvenile Mountain Lion? That would explain the smaller size.

32 jtkatec August 15, 2014 at 9:42 AM

Oh, come on people, it’s clearly the camel from the Seeno residence!!!

They washed it and it shrunk!!

Wow, I thought everyone knew that.

33 Anonymous August 15, 2014 at 9:49 AM

Opossum, corn snakes are longer.

34 DoReMi August 15, 2014 at 10:01 AM

Mountain Lion. Its nose is bigger than a bobcat. Though I don’t know why a mt.Lion would have its tail between its legs.

35 Sparkerdoo August 15, 2014 at 10:14 AM

It’s thirsty…..!

36 VikingPrincess August 15, 2014 at 10:16 AM

The spotted markings on both front legs mess it up. How about a Lynx?

37 VikingPrincess August 15, 2014 at 10:23 AM

Maybe its a Savannah

38 babytruck August 15, 2014 at 10:24 AM

It’s that drunk guy Joe. He’s hunkered down like that because he probably thinks it’s the ceramic throne and he’s trying to purge all evidence before he goes home to his angry wife.

39 Off Pine Hollow August 15, 2014 at 10:27 AM

It’s hard to tell! Looks like larger than usual bob cat (because of the markings) or a mountain lion with it’s tail tucked with shadows on the front legs. Either way, they’re both cool.

40 anonymous August 15, 2014 at 10:29 AM

That was cool, thanks for sharing…definitely a mountain lion. The drought has effected all of us.

41 um..... August 15, 2014 at 10:31 AM


42 What security August 15, 2014 at 10:31 AM

First the people now Chupacabra is crossing the boarder

43 Walnut Creek Resident August 15, 2014 at 10:45 AM

Mountain lion!

44 cOMMONsENSE August 15, 2014 at 10:46 AM

It’s a squatch.

45 Munzers August 15, 2014 at 10:54 AM

This was submitted by my husband in our back yard. It’s defiantly not a domestic cat. The short hair is throwing us off. We have a biologist coming out today to set up a study which is really cool. Odd thing is that for the past 2 weeks our chickens have been getting eaten and we have seen a long tail on a large cat in the cameras but too far away to tell exactly what it was. let you all know. Thanks for the opinions.

46 Rest of the video? August 15, 2014 at 11:16 AM

Is there any more video of when it walks up or walks away? That would make it pretty easy to tell.

47 Rw August 15, 2014 at 11:19 AM

Mountain lion! Bob cats are shorter and a bit fluffier. We just saw a mountain lion here in martinez a week ago and reported it. We had one here when I was younger too. Just don’t run try to look big and intimidating.

48 Cat Wrangler August 15, 2014 at 11:24 AM

It’s Charlie the Cougar!

49 J.L.G. August 15, 2014 at 11:30 AM

Short hair smallish head for body= Mountain Loin.

50 rkt88edmo August 15, 2014 at 11:32 AM

no video of it approaching and leaving? That would be helpful. I am sure the wildlife expert would help you get it figured out.

51 Sue August 15, 2014 at 11:37 AM

Munzers care to say whereabout on Marsh Creek, for those of us who also live on the road? We know they’re out there, it’s just always nice to know when they’re in the ‘hood, thirsty critters that they are this time of year.

52 DoReMi August 15, 2014 at 11:48 AM

Also, bobcats have a jacked up appearance in their hind legs. Kind of like Manx’s.

53 pattern on legs August 15, 2014 at 11:51 AM
54 sebas August 15, 2014 at 11:52 AM

Its a mountain lion forshure seen a couple bobcats in the area before and seen a mountain lion only once but i can tell it definitely is a mountain lion so bput your animals away for a while or it will keep coming back

55 Grammar Nazi August 15, 2014 at 11:56 AM

I REALLLLLLLLY wish people would learn the difference between DEFINITELY and DEFIANTLY!!!

So, let me get this straight. Its DEFIANTLY not a domestic cat, because you told it to be, and to hell with your rules! It can be whatever it wants to, and theres nothing you can do about it.

56 Felidae Conservation Fund August 15, 2014 at 12:13 PM

Based on the size of the water trough (10.5 inches as indicated by the poster), this is a good-sized bobcat. A mountain lion is much bigger and has a long tail. There is also evidence of spotting on the legs, which indicates that this is a bobcat.

Are there other videos/images? Any during the daytime? Or at another angle?

57 Ph res August 15, 2014 at 12:32 PM

Its a bobcat, with the compact body, absent tail, and dark, pointy ears. Mountain lions have a longer neck and back, and I believe the tail would show, if it had one.

58 @Munzers August 15, 2014 at 12:33 PM

4 roosters and 3 hens in 10 days?? Did this happen during the day or evening hours?

59 Starman August 15, 2014 at 12:38 PM

Face bone structure and hind leg s make it mt lion animal looks to be dehydrate and of weak structure from limited food sourse

60 anonalon August 15, 2014 at 1:15 PM

If they’re taping why is that the only snippet we get?

61 The Closer August 15, 2014 at 1:37 PM

It’s Bobcat Goldthwait. Times are tough all over.

62 park naturalist August 15, 2014 at 1:37 PM

Based on markings on front legs and relative size compared to the hose/sprinkler head, I’m thinking bobcat. They’re about 20 lbs, or almost double the size of most house cats.

63 Nutcreek Frontier August 15, 2014 at 1:41 PM

Keep us posted, I vote skinny hungry juvenile Mountain Lion due to conformation, but look forward to hearing from the experts

64 Darwin August 15, 2014 at 1:44 PM

Looks like dinner to me :)

65 YYZ August 15, 2014 at 1:46 PM

Leg markings makes me thinks it’s a bobcat.

66 Monkey August 15, 2014 at 2:13 PM

That’s what you get for dangling yummy morsels in wild animal country.

67 The Mamba August 15, 2014 at 2:26 PM

I keep going back and forth because I can’t see the tail, otherwise, I’d say it’s a young mountain lion. Or the Chupacabra.

68 kyburz66 August 15, 2014 at 2:31 PM

chupacabra!!!!! duh!

69 Original Poster August 15, 2014 at 2:38 PM

This video was taken near Aspara Dr on Marsh Creek Rd. We are setting up more cameras and recording full time now (instead of the motion censor recording). Sure doesn’t have a limited food source cause I see deer, skunks, foxes, cyotes, possums, among other things on a regular basis. It doesn’t look anything like all the other bobcats I’ve seen around here. Even the biologist that came out isn’t tottally sure. He seems to think its a juvenile Mountain Lion but we need to catch it on camera with its tail visible to be certain. It’s been here for about two weeks, I’m sure it’ll be back.

70 Munzers August 15, 2014 at 4:00 PM

Geez grammar nazi, it’s called a typo and I don’t appreciate your nazi reference. For all you non believers, it’s a mountain lion.

71 I'm The Urban Spaceman August 15, 2014 at 4:17 PM

Looks like it’s Sméagol.

72 ranti August 15, 2014 at 4:38 PM

It`s a FERAL CAT!!to small to be a mountain lion or bobcat! bobcats have many markings on their fur! this cat has a smooth color, like a mountain lion, however, it is too small and mountain lions have a very ` thick` and long tail! It is a Feral Cat! put out some food for it, it will keep coming back, get at trap and take care of this before you have umpteen Feral Cats running around! $19.99 At Harbor one Freight in Pittsburg on Century blvd or On Pacheco Blvd in Pacheco!

73 Cowellian August 15, 2014 at 4:50 PM

All cats are defiant.

Just sayin’.

74 Bobcat Goldthwait August 15, 2014 at 4:51 PM

Alright, 64 posts in and no Bobcat Goldthwait jokes? I Guess I’m just not that popular anymore. Ain’t feeling da love.

75 Munzers August 15, 2014 at 5:06 PM

The biologist that works for the state of California came out today and verified that it is a mountain lion. Thanks for everyone’s opinions but we have a final analysis now.

76 I Apologize August 15, 2014 at 5:50 PM

A corn cat ?

77 William Shatner trying to pass a huckleberry through his urethra August 15, 2014 at 6:21 PM

@I apologize
A corn cat? Check yer specks. That’s a Kardassian Corn Dog if I’m not too old to sing country.

78 Silva August 15, 2014 at 6:43 PM

Munzers, you may want to lock up those hens!

79 No expert! August 15, 2014 at 9:38 PM

After all those chicken dinners I’d be thirsty too.

80 Kristen August 15, 2014 at 11:19 PM

It’s a Mountain Lion

81 Steve August 16, 2014 at 1:05 AM

If you use color video you’ll see that it’s the Pink Panther. I thought I heard he was in town. (Insert theme song)

82 JRConcord August 16, 2014 at 8:00 AM

It is a ” wombatsizzle cat” ;-)

83 Eddy Deezen August 16, 2014 at 8:17 AM

In the middle of a drought, do we really have water to waste on bobcats?

84 Antler August 16, 2014 at 8:55 AM

Munzers at #75

Please, would you share with us exactly what techniques the biologist used to verify the species? Could she/he tell from your videos? Was there another sighting while the biologist was there? Did the biologist have to track the animal, find paw prints? scat? etc.? What a fascinating job that would be!

And please do let us see more videos and photos. Will they try to trap and relocate the mountain lion and its other family members?

85 Silva August 16, 2014 at 9:36 AM

How do you get a biologist to make a house call?

86 Yes! Please share how i.d. was distinguished! August 16, 2014 at 9:54 AM

I, too, am very interested to know how it was distinguished, as I sometimes get reports and questions about how to determine, and the information would be helpful/useful to me:

-shape of ears?
– tracks?
-another sighting?

87 Munzers August 16, 2014 at 10:34 AM

The size and muscular structure were the deciding factors. Also, if it was a bobcat you would see the tail nub sticking up. The biologist came to the house because my husband sent him the video from above. Once he saw the size of the basin the mountain lion was drinking out of he knew it was bigger than a bob cat. We have no other videos right now but will post any that come along.

88 anon August 16, 2014 at 1:33 PM

that’s what i said. nobody ever listens to me. especially the trader joe’s guys when i told two of them that there was something wrong with the freezer.

89 prehistoric August 16, 2014 at 10:05 PM

It’s clearly a North American Saber Tooth Tiger.

90 Yaz August 16, 2014 at 10:14 PM

I came across a really big cat (mountain lion or bobcat) in the over-brush about 1 month ago while hiking the Toyon Canyon Trail at Briones open space. I was hiking with my children and puppy. Scariest hike of my life!

91 Laura Zah August 17, 2014 at 12:21 AM

What do I think? I think you ought to lock your chickens up in their coop at night.

92 Dr. Jellyfinger® August 17, 2014 at 12:30 AM


93 anon August 17, 2014 at 7:50 AM

For those that are thinking domestic cat look again.I have never seen muscle tone like that on a domestic cat.Also the water bowl is almost a foot tall and it stands well above that.That is a big puddy cat.

94 @21 August 17, 2014 at 7:58 AM

Munzers, thank you for the positive ID.
Be safe.

95 Karino August 17, 2014 at 8:44 AM

This is an adolescent puma. Very cool!

96 melliemom August 25, 2014 at 9:41 AM

Did this ever get figured out? I was driving in on Marsh Creek Rd this morning (August 25, 2014) and something crossed the road right it front of me. At first I thought because of the small size and the orange-ish color that it was a coyote but when I focused on it, I swear it was a bobcat. I’ve never seen one before but knew it was too big to be a cat a too small to be a dog, and not big enough to be a mountain lion). The tail was like a round knot, it was muscular, and short legs. I think there was some detail of color in the coat but the orange got my attention. It was coming from one side where there was someone’s house (?) across the road and up the hill.

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