At around 11 a.m. on Tuesday, a group of quilters in Steinbach received a surprise not many people get to experience.

Barry Dyck, the executive director at the Mennonite Heritage Village, said the ladies were sitting in the quilting room when they saw a bobcat through the bright, sunny windows.

He said that, naturally, everyone took out their phones and began taking photos.

The picture immediately made its way onto Facebook, where Dyck says, it’s been seen by more than 22,000 people.

“I guess you can say it’s gone viral at this point,” he said, with a chuckle.

Dyck said he thinks it’s not a very common sight, and so people are intrigued.

Janine Stewart, a human wildlife conflict management biologist with Manitoba Conservation says that’s exactly the case.

She said it’s a very exciting photograph because bobcats are fairly rare in Manitoba. She said they are most likely to be found in the southeast corner of the province.

Stewart said it’s rare for the animals to be seen in public as they are a solitary and secretive animal.

The photo on Facebook sparked some controversy. People shared their comments and thoughts about whether the feline was a lynx or a bobcat.

Stewart confirmed that it was in fact a bobcat. She said although lynxes and bobcats are similar, lynxes have longer legs and bigger feet, while bobcat fur is more patterned and reddish.

Dyck mentioned there were rumours circulating that others had spotted the animal as well.

Stewart had a warning for people who might spot the wild animals. She said not to approach them as they could attack if they feel an invasion of space.

She said, however, if in a secure location, pictures are always welcome.