Genus: Lynx (Total members of this genus: Canadian lynx, Eurasian lynx, Iberian lynx, and Bobcat)
Species: Lynx lynx
Background on the Lynx Genus
A lynx is any of the four species within the Lynx genus of medium-sized wild cats, which includes the bobcat. The name “lynx” originated in Middle English via Latin from the Greek word λύγξ, which is derived from the Indo-European root leuk, meaning (“light, brightness”)- in reference to the luminescence of its reflective eyes.
Neither the caracal, sometimes called the desert lynx, nor the jungle cat, called the jungle lynx, is a member of the Lynx genus.
The four lynx species have the largest range across the world of any felid, and are found on both sides of the Atlantic.
All Lynx or (Lynxes, you can say it either way) have a short tail, characteristic tufts of black hair on the tips of their ears, and large padded paws for walking on snow. Their paws may be larger than a human hand or foot.
Body colour varies from medium brown to goldish to beige-white, and is often marked with dark brown spots, especially on the limbs. All species of lynx have white fur on their chests, bellies and on the insides of their legs.
Lynx’s pupils contract to circles instead of slits in daylight. Generally the pupils of most small cats contract to vertical slits, while those of tigers and most other big cats contract to a circle. There some exceptions, just to name a couple: the snow leopard’s eyes apparently contract to a sort of oblong shape and the Pallas cat’s eyes contract to circles even though it is a smaller cat.
The Eurasian Lynx
The Eurasian lynx (also known as the Russian or Siberian or Northern lynx) is even larger the Canadian lynx. The Eurasian lynx is the biggest of all the lynxes. And its spots are more prominent. They range from 15-29 kg (33-64 lbs). Height wise they go from 65-75 cm (26-30 in).
The Eurasian lynx lives in the forested locations of European and Siberian forests, Central Asia and East Asia.
It got hunted out of most of Western Europe but its now being reintroduced into Switzerland, Germany, and Austria where they are beginning to thrive. Some farmers are complaining it takes their farm animals for dinner but cat conservation authorities are closely monitoring the process and more studies show that allowing adult cat predators to live near farms is actually much safer for livestock than relocating the cats or god forbid shooting them. The reason is older adult cats learn to stay away from the farms lest they get shot. If they are removed, the young inexperienced ones come into the abandoned territories to try their own luck at the farm and the cycle continues. Experienced animals learn to stay away from the area and do.
Eurasian lynx eat primarly deer and rabbit (the boys catch more deer than the girls due to their size).
During the summer, the Eurasian lynx has a short, reddish or brown coat. In the winter it’s replaced by a much thicker silver-grey to silvery brown fluffier coat.