Watch a Stealth Bobcat Launch a Midnight Attack on a Trespassing Coyote

Written by Sharon Parry
Updated: February 19, 2023
© Victor Arita/
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The action in this clip is over in just a few short seconds. It’s filmed at night, so you have to concentrate hard to catch what is going on. But you won’t miss the scream! A bobcat sneaks up on an unsuspecting coyote and then crouches in the long grass. Only its shining eyes are visible. The coyote trots into the field, completely oblivious to the waiting feline. When the bobcat strikes it launches itself at the coyote who lets out an unworldly scream. Then the coyote leaves pretty quickly!

Coyote’s Predators and Lifestyle

Coyotes are also known in some areas as prairie wolves and are one of the most common species of mammals in North America. They are nocturnal and are one of the animal species that have been able to adapt to live alongside humans very successfully. There are actually 19 subspecies of coyotes including the plains coyote and the Mexican coyote. They look a bit like a slim wolf with very large ears and weigh up to around 50 pounds.

Coyote standing under trees
Coyotes and bobcats compete with each other for prey

©Sam Carrera/

Coyotes have a huge range of vocalizations which include barks, howls, growls and, as we hear here, screams! They use sounds to communicate greetings and warnings.

Thanks to their speed and ferocious nature, they do not have many predators but they are hunted by wolves, cougars, bears and alligators. According to recent research, bobcats and coyotes compete for prey but there is no evidence that bobcats feed on coyotes. This was probably more of a warning than an attempt to hunt the coyote as prey.

All About Bobcats

Bobcats are native to central and north America and are medium-sized members of the Felidae family. Their usual prey includes rabbits, mice and deer. These animals lead a solitary life and are about double the size of a domestic cat!

They are carnivores and are nocturnal or crepuscular – which means that they are most active at dusk and dawn. As a result, they are out and about at the same time of day as coyotes.

Bobcats are highly territorial and males in particular patrol their home ranges marking them with urine, faeces, and claw marks on trees. Perhaps this attack was just a warning gesture when the coyote accidentally stumbled across the bobcat’s territory.

A small coyote looks towards the camera as it searches for food late at night
Both coyotes and bobcats hunt at night – this is what happens when they meet!


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About the Author

Sharon has a Ph.D. in Public Health but has spent the last decade researching and writing about all things connected with animal health and well being. As a life-long animal lover, she now shares her family home with three rabbits, a Syrian hamster, and a very energetic Cocker Spaniel but in the past she has also been a Mom to Guinea Pigs and several cats!She has a passion for researching accurate and credible information about pets and reviewing products that make pet owners' lives a bit easier. When she isn't checking out new pet products she's trekking around the Welsh mountains and beaches with her dog - although she lets her husband and her three grown up daughters tag along sometimes if they are lucky!

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