Even as Utah wildlife officers struggle to re-release it into the wild, a sassy bobcat trapped for eating chickens registers its displeasure with snarls and swipes, a video shows.
Now a Twitter post of the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources video by the Center for Biological Diversity, dubbing the bobcat “Mr. Murderbritches,” has gained the feisty feline legions of online fans.
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Despite the new moniker, the actual gender of Mr. Murderbritches remains unknown, reported The Salt Lake Tribune.
“He’s a mean little cuss, so every time I tried to check, he’d tear into me,” said conservation officer Josh Carver, according to the publication. “So I never really verified.”
Either way, Mr. Murderbritches has plenty of new fans — as of Thursday morning, the Center for Biological Diversity post had been retweeted 3,700 times and liked by nearly 10,000 people since going up Wednesday.
“Mr. Murderbritches. I have found my patronus,” wrote author Jenny Lawson on Twitter, referring to a protective animal charm from the “Harry Potter” series.
“I have met my soulmate and he’s a bobcat,” wrote another fan on Twitter.
“Get Mr. Murderbritches a Netflix show, a stuffed animal toy line, an animated Pixar movie, a live-action reboot of the original movie, or better yet, leave Mr. Murderbritches alone, because you mess with Murderbritches, you get stitches,” wrote author Chuck Wendig on Twitter.
” ‘I KILZ U STICK’ is now my battle cry,” wrote another fan on Twitter, referring to humorous “translations” of the bobcat’s snarls and growls added to the original video by the Center for Biological Diversity.
In the original video, the bobcat snarls and swipes at the wildlife officer trying to open the trap with a pair of pliers.
“Don’t you get me,” the officer says. Another officer prods the bobcat with a stick to distract it, and the furious feline fights back.
“Out you go,” says the first officer, opening the trap, but the bobcat initially sticks around to snarl and snap at the stick some more before scampering off.
The testy young bobcat had turned up in a Kanarraville, Utah, chicken coop in late November before being trapped and released in the Twitter video, reported The Salt Lake Tribune. It later returned to town — an eight-mile journey — and ended up in a doghouse before being released into the wild a second time.
“He was a little more comfortable with me this time around, but I really didn’t want him to comfortable around humans,” Carver said, according to the publication. “I poked him with a stick a few times, so he’d realize we were a threat.”