Natives of southern Arizona and Texas, and Central and South America, sightings of jaguarundis in the Shell Mound area have been reported over the years but never confirmed. Jaguarundis are said to have been released nearby in the past century, and other sightings have been reported elsewhere in Florida and the southeast. See the Distribution and Habitat section on the Wikipedia account (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jaguarundi). However, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission does not recognize occurrence of the jaguarundi in the state.
Post written by Russ Hall
At dawn on June 21 of this year, Peg and I were at Shell Mound, seeking to recreate the experience of the Summer Solstice that Native Americans had a millennium ago. Daybreak on the fishing dock was lovely as we watched the sunrise in the east. We had the place almost to ourselves—except for swarms of no-see-ums. They kept us from lingering and we were soon on our way back toward Cedar Key. A short distance beyond the bridge over Dennis Creek Peg noticed an animal perhaps 50 yards ahead of us on the side of the road. Shadows were long and the animal was backlit, but its outline was clearly visible. It must be a fox, I thought. When it turned and made for the tree line, however, I noticed that its bounding gait was not at all like a fox. “It’s a bobcat,” I exclaimed. “But it had a long tail,” Peg said.
Hmm, a cat with a long tail. Could it be the elusive jaguarundi?
So, putting an end to the mystery is a challenge for anyone who has a wildlife camera and is looking for a project.
The Refuge is open daily from dawn to dusk.
Due to coronavirus concerns, the headquarters building is closed to visitors. However, staff are working as usual and the Refuge is open for appropriate recreational uses including boating, hiking, fishing, biking, and birding.
The Refuge Manager Andrew Gude can be reached by text or phone at 703.622.3896.
Hunting Information from the Refuge Manager
The print version of the 2020-2021 Hunt Regulations Brochure is now available. For a digital version,
click on the photo below. A current LSNWR Hunt Brochure, signed by the hunter, must be in his or her possession when hunting. The brochure includes websites to obtain hunting permits and required harvest reports.
For a Summary of the 2020-2021
Hunt Season Schedule,
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