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Euroasian lynx

                                      EUROASIAN LYNX Lynx lynx


 Eurasian Lynx Lynx lynx is the largest representative of the felidae family in Europe. It is a solitary animal. A secretive and nocturnal lifestyle, and establishing refuges in poorly accessible areas, make observations of the lynx extremely rare. Those who witnessed the lynx in its natural environment may count themselves among the few lucky ones.



In Poland, lynxes populate mainly the Carpathians, as well as north-eastern and eastern parts of Poland. Based on annual estimates by various units of the State Forests, 53 4818 ha covered by the project is home to more than 190 lynxes.

Species Description

  • Body Mass: 18–25 kg
  • Body Length: 80–130 cm
  • Shoulder Height: 60–75 cm
  • Sexual Dimorphism: minimal, males are taller and heavier
  • Nutrition: carnivore, predator
  • Lifespan: 12-17 years
  • Lifestyle: solitary


Biology and ecology

Lynxes are exceptionally secretive animals. The possibility of encountering them and even finding their tracks, is smaller than e.g. in the case of a bear or a wolf. Lynxes live in solitude, with the exception of females caring for their young. Males and females live separately, and meet most often in the oestrous period, which lasts from January to March. The 1-3 young, born ca. May start accompanying their mother after a few months, accompanying her in wanderings and later on hunts. The lynx makes its lairs usually in hard to reach places, in young growth stands, steep slopes, rocky outcrops, fallen trees. Territories of males are ca. 150–250 km2 and females ca. 100–150 km2. Territories of females and males are fully overlain, and within the same gender, overlaps are minimal. Lynxes travel on average ca. 7 km (a maximum of 20 km), and mostly nocturnal. The lynx possesses well developed eyesight and hearing. Its teeth are adapted to crushing and cutting, with well-developed canines and molars. They feed almost exclusively on game, and their preferred quarry is roe deer. Their main hunting method is stalking. The lynx attempts to stealthily get as close to the victim as possible, using shrubs, fallen trees and uneven terrain to conceal itself. It is a good tree-climber and jumper.


Protection and hazards

The main areas of lynx presence areas forests, the animals are very reluctant to cross open fields. The problem in the context of maintaining the population of this species is the development of river valleys, modernizing roads and their fencing, and the resulting fragmentation of habitats. Such construction and roads constitute insurmountable barriers between forest complexes. The discontinuity of forest areas and lack of possibility for migration, are the other main factors hindering the spreading and maintenance of the lynx population.


International law

  • Habitat Directive – Appendix II and IV
  • Bern Convention – Appendix III
  • Washington Convention (CITES) – Appendix II
  • Regulation of the Council EC 338/97 – Appendix A

National legislation

  • Species protection – strict protection – species requiring active protection
  • Temporary protection zone: place of reproduction and area within a 500 m radius therefrom between 01.04 and 31.08

IUCN threat category

  • IUCN Red List of endangered species – LC (least concern)
  • The Red List of vanishing and endangered species in Poland (2002) – NT (near threatened)
  • Polish Red Book of animals (2001) – NT (near threatened)
  • Red List for the Carpathians (2003) – EN (endangered)


Eurasian lynx, fot....
Clues eurasian lynx,...
Clues eurasian lynx,...

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