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Dual bobcat sightings in Palo Alto

Two sightings of possible bobcats Sunday morning triggered a police alert to Palo Alto residents. The first sighting was at 8 a.m. in the 4100 block of Hubbartt Drive.

The second sighting, an hour later, was less than a half-mile away, near Bol Park.

As of Monday morning, there was no active search, although fliers had been posted in the area.

Bobcats are much smaller than mountain lions. "They just don't go after people," said Deborah Bartens, city naturalist. She said it is normal for them to travel through creek beds.

In addition, the sighting of a possible mountain lion last Thursday night was almost certainly that of a bobcat.

Bartens said she talked to the woman who made the sighting last week. "She described a bobcat to a `T,'" Bartens said.

Palo Alto has been jittery about the sighting of big cats since the May 17 incident when an adult mountain lion was shot and killed by police near the Main Library and Palo Alto Art Center, setting off a furor of criticism.

— Don Kazak

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