Christopher Thurman is an avid hunter from the Ouchita Mountains of western Arkansas. When he’s not working his beagles for rabbits or chasing huge Arkansas bucks, he likes to do some predator searching on a parcel of land he manages as prime cottontail rabbit habitat. On December 10, Thurman had the predator hunt of a lifetime, bagging two bobcats throughout one mid-morning sit—one in every of which turned out to be a particularly uncommon albino.
“I’ve talked to my native biologist, and it’s the one one ever documented in Arkansas,” Thurman tells Subject & Stream. “No person I’ve talked to has ever seen one.” Pictures of the bobcat, which have since gone viral on Fb and Instagram, present its all-white pelt speckled with gentle blonde spots. Thurman says that each of its eyes and its nostril had been pink, a marker of true genetic albinism.
“I knew the cat was on the property as a result of I bought a photograph of it on one in every of my sport cameras when it was a kitten,” Thurman says. “Then, towards the tip of deer season this yr, the neighbor who owns the adjoining property advised me a man who was deer searching on his land truly noticed it and spooked it on opening day.”
Thurman was stunned to listen to that the bobcat was alive. Given its stark white coat, he figured an owl or a hawk would have picked it off whereas it was younger. As soon as he bought the information that it was nonetheless on the prowl, he got down to hunt it in earnest.
“I bought into my stand round 10 a.m. on the morning of December 10,” Thurman remembers. “I turned on my ‘rabbit-in-distress’ name and inside 10 minutes a daily bobcat stepped out into the open.” He shot the primary bobcat with a Savage rifle chambered in 7 HMR then instantly turned his predator name again on in hopes of calling within the all-white cat. In Arkansas, hunters can tag as much as two bobcats per day throughout a season that runs from September 1 to February 29.
“Inside a minute he popped out of the thicket,” Thurman says. “He crept up and began stalking the decision, like they do, then he sat down behind a tree. That’s once I shot him.” The cat dropped in its tracks subsequent to the tree, and Thurman walked as much as affirm that it was the true albino he’d seen on his sport digital camera.
“I noticed that it had the pink eyes and the pink nostril,” he says, “after which I noticed these blonde spots. It was a tremendous hunt, and getting two in in the future made it even higher.”
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Thurman says he was flooded with affords from taxidermists hoping to mount the uncommon cat after he posted it to the native Sportsmen Get together Fb web page. In the end, he determined to go along with Bishop Taxidermy out of Dover, Arkansas for a full-body mount that he hopes will showcase the cats unimaginable pelt. “Bishop’s the perfect within the state. He’s been doing taxidermy for a very long time, however he’s by no means seen something like this,” he says. “We’re going the have the completed mount preserved in a glass case.”