Lynx released in Algarve amazes experts by reappearing in Catalonia

By TPN/Lusa, in News · 07-06-2018 13:48:00 · 0 Comments
Lynx released in Algarve amazes experts by reappearing in Catalonia

An Iberian lynx released into the wild in 2015, in the valley of the River Guadiana, in Portugal, has amazed experts by reappearing on the other side of Spain, in Catalonia.

According to officials charged with monitoring the animal, it must have travelled over 1,000 kilometres in just the last seven months
The Institute of Nature Conservation and Forests (ICNF), which oversees the Iberian Lynx Reproduction Centre in Silves, in the Algarve, and the project to reintroduce the species into the wild, was informed on 29 May of the animal’s presence in Catalonia. It had been released in Portugal on 14 May of 2015, an official at the Ministry of Environment told Lusa.
Experts charged with monitoring the freed animal managed to track it until last year, but its electronic transmitter stopped working about seven months ago, when it was in the Arade area, near Portimão. They never dreamed it could travel so far, according to the official.
While there had been “recent records of young males with large dispersions” - that is, travelling large distances - the official said that “such a large journey could not be foreseen”, not least given the many and varied obstacles such as highways, railway lines and rivers that it would have had to overcome.

The official noted that only “its future ... capture and change of collar” would make it possible to find out precisely what route it had travelled: the collar, even after stopping transmitting, had the “capacity to store up to 6,000 location records”.
According to experts, it is natural for young male lynxes to range over large areas and this does not necessarily have anything to do with any deterioration in the conditions for it to survive, namely the existence of a healthy population of wild rabbits - its main diet.
The Guadiana valley cannot, the Ministry official explained, be seen as an area where the environment has deteriorated, as the capacity to reproduce of the female lynxes introduced there has demonstrated.


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