Decapitated Rabbit Turns Up on Richmond Hill Road; Bobcat Sighting on Wahackme


A Richmond Hill Road man on Thursday discovered a headless rabbit near his property, officials say—a carcass that the head of the New Canaan Police Department’s Animal Control Unit attributes to a hungry hawk rather than a sick human.

Officer Maryann Kleinschmitt said she could see claw marks on the rabbit near where the head was “completely pulled out.”

“That is very common among these animals,” she said. “They take a rabbit or take a squirrel, they take the head off and then drop the rest of the body and try to go back, because it’s too heavy for them to fly any distance with it.”

A headless rabbit also had turned up on Heritage Hill Road last summer, and that also was said to be the work of a hawk or possibly a raccoon.

Two years ago, two disturbing discoveries turned up in town—when a decapitated cat was discovered around Halloween and then, two weeks later, a rabbit turned up on Pepper Lane with its head clearly chopped off with a knife.


A bobcat was spotted April 8 on Wahackme Road, Kleinschmitt said, leading her to believe firmly that there are two of the animals in town: One on the Ponus Side of New Canaan and the other near Gerdes Road.

“A kitten also has been seen, so we may have three, but so far all I can verify is that we have two,” she said.

The bobcat kitten, spotted in September on Deep Valley Road, hasn’t been seen since.

A bobcat was seen last July on Lukes Wood Road, and then in February a rare photo of a bobcat was captured on Jelliff Mill Road.

Bobcats generally avoid developed areas, officials say, keeping one main den and perhaps additional ones—making them very difficult to photograph. The animals rarely cause problems for humans, officials say, though they may sometimes prey on smaller animals such as shrews, as well as rabbits, raccoons and deer.


Residents of Avalon New Canaan tell police that dog owners from nearby Millport Avenue are leash-walking their pets and allowing them to do their business on the Avalon side of the sidewalk without picking up the mess, Kleinschmitt said. The problem of irresponsible dog owners became serious enough in nearby Lakeview Cemetery that last January, the private property’s owners imposed a strict “no dog” rule and that anyone with a dog in the cemetery would be considered trespassing.

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