Lynx

Lynx Facts
Size Up to 29.5 inch (75 cm) (shoulder height)
Speed Unknown
Weight Up to 83 lb (38 kg)
Lifespan 12-20 years
Food Mammals, birds
Predators Wolves, bears, coyotes
Habitat Europe, Asia, North America (Alaska, Canada), Mexiko
Order Carnivore
Family Cats
Scientific name Lynx lynx
Characteristics Ear tufts, whiskers, short tail

Lynxes are cats of prey. From a scientific point of view, lynxes are categorized as felinae, a subfamily of the cat family, which mainly includes small to medium-sized cats such as cheetahs, pumas, ocelots, servals and fishing cats. But with a shoulder height of 29.5 inch (75 cm) they are not really small. In fact, they are the biggest European wild cats. Lynxes inhabit forests, deserts, tundra regions, wetlands, rocky regions, scrubland and grasslands. They swim and climb very well.

Lynx Species

There are four species of lynx: the Canadian Lynx, the Eurasian Lynx, the Iberian Lynx and the Bobcat.

What do Lynxes eat?

Lynxes hunt almost all mammals and birds, such as mice, marmots, foxes, martens, and wild boars. Yet, they mostly focus on deer.

Are Lynxes Dangerous?

No. Lynxes avoid people. It's the other way around. Humans mean a threat to lynxes. The animals lose their habitats due to agriculture and building streets and rails. They are being hunted for their fur, too. The Pardell lynx is even considered a endangered species.

Lynx Lynx - Photo: animalphotography.ch/Shutterstock

The Lynx Once Lived Here

Today it is something very special to meet a lynx. It is a noble big cat with its fine ear tufts, bushy whiskers and big paws! In former times, the lynx was rather common in Europe.

Yet, because people considered it to be a cattle thief, the lynx was hunted down and soon disappeared. Meanwhile, the lynxes have returned to the Bavarian Forest (Germany).

Fantastic Snow Shoes

The lynx has big, furry paws. When it walks across the snow, it spreads its toes. This makes the surface of its paws even larger so that the lynx hardly sinks into the snow.

Lynx Lynx - Photo: Volodymyr Burdiak/Shutterstock

What Did You Say?

Vanity is not the reason for the lynx’s extraordinary ear tufts. They serve as hearing aids. The lynx can move them like small antennas in all directions in order to better perceive sounds with his ears.

The Eyes Are Bigger Than the Stomach

The Siberian lynx is well known for hunting prey that is twice as large as itself. If there is a chance, it even kills reindeer.

Where Does the Name Come From?

The term “lynx“ originates from the Greek word for “light”. It refers to the eyes of the animal, which are gleaming nicely at night.

They are golden-yellow, yellow-brown or ochre-brown and the lynx’s most important hunting tool. Its eyesight is about six times better than ours.

Lynx Lynx - Photo: Eduard Kyslynskyy/Shutterstock

The Function of the Whiskers

The lynx can ruffle its whiskers, but we do not know yet why it does this. It is assumed that this enables him to better perceive sounds.

Lynx Lynx - Photo: Bildagentur Zoonar GmbH/Shutterstock

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