Lynx

It’s All About that Pumpkin

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Pumpkins are everywhere, this time of year! They make great pies, Jack-O-Lanterns, and pretty awesome enrichment toys for zoo animals. Happy Halloween from ZooBorns!

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Photo Credits: Tammy Spratt/San Diego Zoo Safari Park (Image 1: African Lion Cub); Amiee Stubbs Photography (Image 2: "Charlie" the Porcupine at Nashville Zoo); Lincoln Children's Zoo (Image 3: "Lincoln" the Red Panda); ZooAmerica (Image 4: "Rainier" the Mountain Lion); Zoo Vienna Schönbrunn (Image 5: Elephants); Sue Ogrocki (Images 6-Gorilla,7-Red River Hogs,10-Galapagos Tortoise at Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Gardens); Minnesota Zoo (Image 8: Lynx); The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens (Image 9: Meerkats)

More great pumpkin pics below the fold!

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Jasper the Lynx out Perusing the Pumpkins

Jasper_lynx_PtDefiance_1Canada Lynx kitten, ‘Jasper’, was out enjoying the fall atmosphere, recently, at Point Defiance Zoo in Tacoma, Washington. The six-month-old was helping the zoo promote their upcoming annual event, “Zoo Boo”, a special fall themed weekend that will be held October 18th and 19th.

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Jasper_lynx_PtDefiance_4Photo Credits: Point Defiance Zoo

Jasper was a feature on ZooBorns in July of this year and it is exciting to see him working toward fulfilling his duties as an ambassador for his species, as part of the Species Survival Plan. The Association of Zoos and Aquariums developed the Species Survival Plan (SSP) in 1981, in an effort to help ensure the survival of selected species. SSP programs focus on animals that are in danger of extinction in the wild, when zoo conservationists believe captive breeding programs may be their only chance to survive. 

AZA accredited zoos that are involved in SSP programs engage in cooperative population management and conservation efforts that include research, public education, reintroduction, and field conservation projects. Animal Ambassadors, like Jasper, are an important part of the education provided by SSP programs. By being able to more intimately interact with the animal ambassadors, zoo visitors can gain an understanding about the impact each species can have on the world.

The Canada Lynx is native to North America, and it ranges across Canada, into Alaska and in some parts of the northern Continental United States. Although currently classified as “Least Concern” on the IUCN Red List, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service designated the Canada Lynx as a “Threatened Species” in the lower 48 states.  The species is trapped for its fur and has declined in many areas due to habitat loss.

More great photos below the fold!

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Jasper The Lynx Cub Struts His Stuff At Point Defiance Zoo

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Meet Point Defiance Zoo's 9-week-old Canada Lynx kitten. Jasper is part of the Species Survival Plan® for Canada Lynx, which are listed as endangered in Washington state. He now weighs about 4 pounds and is being hand-reared by Point Defiance Zoo staff. Jasper will make periodic appearances around the zoo this summer as he grows into his role as an ambassador for his species.

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Lynx Triplets Born at Dudley Zoo

DZG_Lynx_Cub_3There’s much excitement at the United Kingdom’s Dudley Zoo!  Three Carpathian Lynx cubs – the first ever born at the zoo – arrived on May 23.

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DZG_Lynx_Cub_2Photo Credit:  Dudley Zoological Gardens


The triplets have been tucked in their den with mother Daisy since birth, but they started to explore the great outdoors this week.

Assistant Curator Richard Brown said of first-time mother Daisy, “We’re all absolutely delighted with the cubs’ progress.  We've got a few more weeks to wait until we find out what sex they are, when we'll also be giving them their first vaccinations."

Dad is three-year-old Dave, who remains in the enclosure with Daisy and their offspring. 

Carpathian Lynx are a subspecies of Eurasian Lynx found in the Carpathian mountains of Romania.  Scientists believe that about 2,500 Lynx live in these forests, the densest population in all of Europe. 

Lynx are secretive cats, and are most active early in the morning and late at night.  They feed on hares, birds, and other small prey. 

In some parts of Europe, these cats are locally extinct due to loss of habitat.


Curious Lynx Kittens Show Their Climbing Cred at Cheyenne Mountain Zoo

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Cheyenne Mountain Zoo’s three curious, climbing Lynx kittens have been spotted exploring their public exhibit. Born on May 8, 2013, the two males and one female have been in an off-exhibit outdoor habitat until they were big enough to maneuver the larger public exhibit space. The zoo invites guests to view the growing kittens and their parents – mother, Magina (mah-jee’-nah), and father, Kajika (kah-jee’-kah).

The three Lynx kittens are the first Canada Lynx born at Cheyenne Mountain Zoo. Often mistaken for Bobcats, Lynx are classified by Colorado Parks and Wildlife as federally threatened and a Colorado state special concern. The zoo’s Lynx were paired together following a breeding recommendation from the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) Species Survival Plan. The birth of the three Lynx is truly exciting. Yet, the story of the parents living together is extremely rare and unique.

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In the wild, Canada Lynx live as solitary cats. They don’t live in pairs, don’t hunt together, nor do they raise their young in family groups. In fact, other than breeding, males and females typically want nothing to do with each other and males want even less to do with their kittens. Cheyenne Mountain Zoo strives to mimic wild-living arrangements in a captive setting, but in the case of Cheyenne's Canada Lynx, they didn’t appear to want to live like their wild counterparts.

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Lynx Kittens Explore New Territory at Montreal's Espace Pour La Vie Biodôme

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On June 4, the Espace Pour La Vie (Space for Life) Biodôme in Montréal welcomed three Lynx kittens into the world. The kittens are developing normally with their mother’s attentive care. She diligently nurtures her little ones, nursing them, cleaning them and keeping them warm. Their first medical exam found that they are one male and two females, all growing healthy and fast. Ten weeks after the birth, the kittens and their mother transitioned to a new home: a Laurentian maple forest exhibit viewable by the public. Their arrival in the habitat signals a new phase in their development, during which they will hone their reflexes with their mother’s help. Visitors can see the Lynx kittens playing together, interacting with their mother and exploring their environment freely. The father will be kept separately in the nighttime quarters, as the female could perceive him as a threat to her offspring.

Both adult Lynx are seven years old, and this is the third time the pair have reproduced at the Biodôme—a clear sign that they are healthy and happy in their habitat. In the summer of 2012, the female gave to litter of three, but only one kitten survived to adulthood. Caretakers at the Biodôme decided to supplement that kitten’s diet with bottle-feeding while allowing it to continue nursing from its mother. In January of 2013, the healthy adult offspring moved to another institution to be paired with another lynx for breeding. This year’s litter is growing even more quickly under the care of the more-experienced mother; this time, caretakers did not need to intervene with extra feedings. As the captive Lynx population’s growth rate is very low, the birth of new kittens increases its genetic diversity. This year's litter may eventually be moved to other institutions to form new breeding pairs. 

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Photo credits: Space for Life / Claude Lafond

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Lynx Kitten Triplets Make Their Public Debut at Whipsnade Zoo

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With their pointy ears peeking out from the long grass, this trio of Lynx kittens played hide and seek as they recently made their public debut at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo. The eight-week-old triplets named Ruby, Amber, and Opal, spent their first few weeks snuggled up inside with their mother, Maja, before taking their first tiny, tentative steps outside this week. And now they are big enough to venture out on their own! The playful kittens are getting bolder by the day and are often spotted perched on tree trunks from which to pounce, play fighting in the grass, and snoozing on logs.

Zookeeper Cliff Tack said: “All three kittens are doing fantastically well. Mum kept them well hidden in their den to begin with, but they’re now growing in confidence and becoming a lot more adventurous, especially with the warm weather encouraging them to come out to play.”

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Photo Credit: ZSL Whipsnade Zoo

Known as a crepuscular species, European Lynx are most active at dawn and dusk, and the kittens are already showing signs of this behavior – with keepers spotting the cheeky trio at their most playful at the beginning and end of the day. The all-girl trio, who are parents Maja and Timo’s third litter, are a welcome addition to the European StudBook Breeding Program for Lynx. They are already showing off their distinctive pointed ears, and are just beginning to develop spotted markings on their coats which will continue to appear as they get older.

Read some Fun facts and see more pictures, after the jump:

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One of Two Shy Lynx Cubs Weighs In at Kristiansand Zoo

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In late May, Kristiansand Zoo in Norway welcomed two Eurasian Lynx cubs. One of them, shown in the photographs on a July 4th checkup, is a little male weighing about three and a half pounds (1.54 kg). The other cub, whose sex isn't yet known, was hiding at the time and didn't want to come out for a checkup. These little additions bring the zoo's Lynx count up to six. 

According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature, the Eurasian Lynx is considered a species of Least Concern on the Red List of Threatened Species. However, though this cat ranges widely throughout the Eurasian continent, some populations of the Eurasian Lynx are endangered or critically endangered, often due to illegal hunting. It is classified as an endangered species in Norway, where Kristiansand Zoo is located. 

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Photo Credits: Kristiansand Zoo

 

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Canadian Lynx Triplets Get a Checkup at Zoo Brno

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A litter of Canadian Lynx triplets born in May at the Czech Republic’s Zoo Brno had a health checkup last week.  The three kittens – one male and two female – were proclaimed healthy by the zoo staff.

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Photo Credit:  Zoo Brno

Zoo staff gave the trio their vaccinations and implanted an identifying microchip in each youngster.  Catching the elusive kittens was a challenge, because they are so active!

Canadian Lynx live in forested areas across all of Canada and Alaska.  Their large furry feet act like snowshoes to help them travel through deep drifts.  They feed primarily on Snowshoe Hares.  Though they are legally trapped for their fur, Canadian Lynx are listed as a species of Least Concern by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. Canadian Lynx are listed as Threatened by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service because they have been extirpated in many parts of their original Rocky Mountain range.

See more photos of the triplets' exam below the fold.

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Nashville Zoo Welcomes Eurasian Lynx

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Nashville Zoo is pleased to announce the birth of a Eurasian Lynx. The female cub was born to the Zoo’s on-exhibit pair on Saturday, May 4.

“We suspected that our Lynx might be pregnant due to a slight weight gain but never had confirmation,” said Connie Philipp, mammal curator. “The cub arrived on its estimated due date based on the data the keepers collected, and she’s now being hand-raised by our animal care staff. She will eventually join an educational outreach program at another zoo.”

Lynx cub feeding - Amiee Stubbs

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Photo credits: Amiee Stubbs Photography

Nashville Zoo is home to three Eurasian Lynx, a male and female on exhibit, and a male, known as Blitz, that is a part of our “Wildlife on Wheels” program. The Eurasian Lynx exhibit was generously sponsored by David and Kathryn Brown.

Eurasian Lynx are the largest of the lynx species and are native to Central Asian, European and Siberian forests. While not listed as endangered, Eurasian Lynx are rarely seen in some parts of its home range.