Tails From The Zoo

Canadian Lynx January 31, 2010

Filed under: Wild Cats,Zoo Animals,Zoo Knew — Scott Gray @ 7:37 pm
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Chris Reid and I talked about lynx this morning on our weekly radio segment called Zoo Knew (listen at 7:15 am every Sunday on CJOB 68 AM). Here is a quick summary:

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We have six Canadian lynx at the Assiniboine Park Zoo. Our elder pair is a male named Oscar (born in 1994) and a female named Ella (born in 1993).

  • Lynx have a lifespan of 15 – 20 years.

Our breeding pair includes a male (born in 2004) named Bizhiw, which is a Cree word for “lynx” and a female (born in 2006) named Shy-anne.

Shy-anne and Bizhiw had four offspring in 2009. Each kitten was named, in Cree, after one of the four directions (east, west, …)

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Canadian lynx (Lynx canadensis) are closely related to the bobcat (Lynx rufus), which we have also exhibited at the zoo for many years. Both species are related to the endangered Iberian lynx and to the Eurasian lynx.

Canadian lynx can be identified by their black-tipped ears, their short black-tipped tail, long gray fur, long tufts (ruff) of fur around their face and chin, feet covered with fur, a short body and long legs.

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Canadian lynx are ambush predators, lying in wait at night for snowshoe hare, their favourite prey, to pass by.

Lynx are generally found in the boreal forests of Canada and Alaska as well as ranging the Rocky mountains.

Lynx Size:

  • Range in weight from 8 to 14 kg (males are larger)
  • Stand approximately 60 cm tall
  • Are approximately 90 cm long

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Compiled by Scott Gray with references from Canadian Geographic, Hinterland Who’s Who and the book “Great Cats – Majestic Creatures of the Wild

Photo available here: http://assiniboinepark.ca/media/animals/pdf/Lynx_Can_23.75×18.pdf

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