Patrick Soniera has been hunting and tracking bobcats in Vermont for fifty years, and he has a diary entry about every single hunt–the weather, the birds or the bears, the behavior of the cat tracks he followed–his diaries fill one whole wall of his office. And for the majority of those days out in the woods, Patrick never even saw a bobcat. You almost never see them, which is why Patrick is so fascinated by these cats.
Last year Patrick went out tracking cats with his hounds a hundred and fifty times and he shot one bobcat. He says it isn’t about the killing. And that’s what all good hunters say. And when you ask, ‘Well then why not just take a camera?’, the answer is always the same.
‘Because I’m a hunter.’
After years of interviewing good hunters, I’m beginning to understand the tautological logic of this. Part of Patrick’s love for bobcats is the fact of the hunt. And part of why he’s able to share years’ worth of knowledge with Vermont Fish and Wildlife is because now and then he kills one.
Thank you to Louis Porter of Vermont Fish and Wildlife for recommending Patrick to me. I love the state where I live…
This show is sponsored by Honey Road, my all time favorite restaurant in Vermont. Make a reservation. Go. Eat. Report back. And click on the image below for more information.