The endangered Spanish lynx (Lynx pardinus) are one of the most, if not the most, endangered felines on Earth. Their numbers have been rising, and they are being reintroduced to other parts of the Iberian Peninsula. The good news is that they are now considered endangered rather than critically endangered.
According to Reuters five Iberian lynx have recently been released in Granada, Spain. Two captive bred males, a pair of wild born females and a kitten. The idea is to live and reproduce in the region.
The cats dropped in number to about 150, and have been rebounding since. Reuters said:
“In a major leap, the Iberian lynx population in Portugal and Spain rose above 1,000 at the end of 2020.
In Andalusia alone there are currently 522 Iberian lynx in different population nuclei of the region, said Guiseppe Aloisio, director of the regional forest and biodiversity department.
“This is Andalusia’s success. As a region it has been able to multiply by five the critical census we had 20 years ago,” he told reporters after the release of the five wild cats.”
The endangered Spanish lynx have been the beneficiaries of intensive efforts to rescue them. The cats were faced with threats from traffic accidents and urbanization, among other factors.
Lynx are a family of four cats. Lynx rufus (bobcats) inhabit most of the United States and parts of Mexico. The Canada Lynx (Lynx canadensis) inhabits much of Canada. The largest is the Eurasian lynx (Lynx lynx) which can weigh 80 pounds. It is found from Europe east to Siberia. The smaller lynx such as bobcats weigh about 20 pounds, although a 40 pound bobcat is not unheard of.