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Could this be proof of big cats in Gloucestershire?

By Ben_Falconer  |  Posted: December 19, 2013

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Could this be proof of big cats in Gloucestershire?

Comments (8)

COULD this be another step on a big cat tracker’s quest to prove their existence in Gloucestershire?

Frank Tunbridge believes the footage he has captured shows a large, black cat prowling a field at night.

“In my mind there is nothing else it could be,” said Mr Tunbridge, who has received 64 reports of bigs cats in Gloucestershire in 2013.

“I put the camera up at that site after about four to six residents said they had seen it.

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“It took about a week to get it. I know the footage is short but it’s long in the body and the size of it suggests it is a cat.”

He placed the cameras there after it was spotted prowling through fields in Winchcombe in April 2012.

Residents who tried to get close were snarled at, near Mount View Drive.

A black figure appears near the bottom left hand corner of the screen near the start of the footage.

Mr Tunbridge has day time footage of what is believed to be a fox, taken by the same camera, to show the area in context.

Resident Keith Baker said he saw it at least 10 times, and giant paw prints dotted the fields. Mother-of-three Carrie Short, said “there is no way” it is a domestic cat, believing it to be a panther.

Mr Tunbridge, from Podsmead, Gloucester, has cameras set up all over the county at sighting hot spots.

He knows that short of a carcass or live specimen being caught, conclusive video footage will go along way to convincing the public that they exist.

Stroud teaching assistant Coryn Memory used his camera to get film of what appeared to be a black cat bounding around in fields near her home, revealed almost two years ago.

However Professor Stephen Harris, of the School of Biological Sciences’ Mammal Research Unit at Bristol University said it was more likely to be a large domestic cat.

University of Warwick tests to find big cat DNA on deer carcasses discovered near Woodchester Park and Dursley only found traces of fox and deer, almost two years ago.

“I accept this footage is not conclusive but what else could it be?” said Mr Tunbridge.

“All the evidence, to me, points to it being a big cat.”

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8 comments

  • paulpatterson  |  January 03 2014, 5:27PM

    Ha....now I wonder! ... Just how many "big cats" has the bad weather and floods in England and the UK as a whole, has been seen, found dead, floating in some flooded field or even caught in these tripcams? NONE....why? Because there are no "big cats" wild and free or breeding within the mainland UK!

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  • A_Tracker  |  December 20 2013, 6:32PM

    I for one think it's exciting that there are so many sightings of these elusive creatures. Having watched this footage on a large screen (with brightness turned way up), I can't see how people mistake it for a Fox, let alone a Badger???? Just look at the tail for starters. Then there is the gait of the animal, plus the eyes of Cats, Foxes and Badgers all reflect light from the tapetum lucidum in their eyes differently. I am an experienced wildlife tracker, learning from one of the foremost trackers in the UK, so just thought I would add an experienced opinion to this comments list. I think Glos Media are putting their reputation on the line with this sort of thing, especially considering the former posts here. So I for one am grateful to them for publishing this type of information.

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  • JeremyBadger  |  December 20 2013, 12:37PM

    This "sighting" is very similar to one that I saw a few years back of the Lock Ness Monster. Was that figure in the background, Elvis??

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  • Douglasknows  |  December 20 2013, 11:25AM

    I congratulate Mr Tunbridge on his methods of keeping this story alive and the way you get the Citizen to go along with it. Bravo!

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  • wsjd2003  |  December 20 2013, 8:51AM

    That's 40 seconds of my life i'll never get back...

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  • Glos_Lad34  |  December 20 2013, 6:48AM

    I think that is a fox and not this so big cat.

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  • Apothegm_  |  December 19 2013, 7:50PM

    "Could this be proof of big cats in Gloucestershire?" No.

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  • GlosAnarchy  |  December 19 2013, 6:16PM

    #1 Rancid badger - it's just a badger get over it! #2 Mange ridden fox - It walks along the near side of the hedge, there is what appears to be a utility pole within a few meters of said hedge, compare the size of the fox with this pole hmm it's a fox! Next

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