Troy Borill has been a man on a mission for about the last five years or so, actively hunting predators in Acadia Parish that impact deer and their habitat like wild hogs, coyotes and bobcats.
On Monday, Feb. 5, the 48-year-old pharmaceutical salesman dropped a giant trophy — but it didn’t have a gnarly rack or a huge inside spread.
It did, however, have a wicked set of teeth — it was a massive male bobcat that tipped the scales at a whopping 38 pounds, and no one he's talked to — including a couple of biologists with the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries — has seen one that big in a long time.
“I never even noticed the cat out there. A lot of times what they’ll do is come out the woods a few feet and just sit. They don’t start their stalking process right away - they’ll sit tight and look to see what’s causing the noise or the distress,” said the hunter, who was trying out his new Primos Boss Dogg remote electronic predator caller that evening. “So the sun had just about set and I looked out about 80 yards and said, “I don’t remember that stump being there.’ They’re so camouflaged you can’t see them with the naked eye. So I got my binoculars and looked at him and still couldn’t tell it was a cat — until he moved his head.”
He was positioned in a box stand about 85 yards away, and was alternating playing a young cottontail in distress call with a baby cottontail and an adult cottontail call.
“He was facing me, and I didn’t want to give him a chance to figure out what was going on. I had a good rest in the box stand, so I aimed for his chest and he fell right there,” he said. “I didn’t realize how big he was until I walked up on him.”
About five years ago, he shot a 30-pounder, which was dwarfed by this cat.
“When I walked up on this one, I said, ‘Man, this cat is humongous,’” he said. “A Houston friend sent me a website about a big bobcat contest in Texas this year, and the winner was 38 pounds and it paid $47,000. And the second place winner wasn’t even 30 pounds.
“I was like, ‘Man, I’d have taken second place for sure — and it paid $27,000.”
The big cat is still in the freezer, awaiting a trip to the taxidermist for what will likely be a very impressive full-body mount.
“I haven’t had a person yet say, ‘I killed one that big,’ or ‘I’ve seen one that big around here.’ You just don’t see a bobcat that weighs 38 to 40 pounds in Louisiana,” he said. “I almost have to mount him now to do him some justice.”