About animals

Canadian Lynx (Lynx canadensis) Eng


Canadian Lynx has an average body size and is much like a red lynx. The color of the coat is usually yellowish brown. The back is darker and the stomach is lighter relative to the rest of the body. Many individuals have dark spots. The tail is rather short and ends with a black tip. Lynx hair is long and thick; it protects the animal well in winter. With the approach of cold weather, long "whiskers" grow in lynxes, which cover the neck. The triangular ears are slightly inclined, and have black tassels (about 4 cm long). The paws are quite large and fluffy, so the weight of the animal is evenly distributed when walking in the snow. The forelimbs are shorter than the hind limbs, like the red-haired trot. There are 4 nipples on the stomach.

The length of the head and body of the lynx ranges from 67-106.7 cm, and the length of the tail is 5-13 cm. The height at the withers varies from 48 to 56 cm. These cats usually weigh from 4.5 to 17.3 kg. Sexual dimorphism is pronounced, males are larger than females. This lynx is almost half the size of an ordinary lynx.

Canadian Lynx has 28 teeth and four long fangs. The lynx is able to feel with its fangs the place where it bites its prey, since they are penetrated by many nerves. She also has four predatory teeth that grind meat into small pieces. The claws are sharp and fully extendable.

The Canadian lynx differs from the red lynx by longer tassels on the ears, less red fur, less distinct spotting, a shorter tail and large paws. Red lynx, as a rule, is smaller than the Canadian one. Caracal or steppe lynx has similar to the North American type of tassels on the ears.


Canadian lynx lives throughout Canada, in Western Montana, and in nearby areas of Idaho and Washington. There are small populations in New England and Utah, as well as possibly in Oregon, Wyoming, and Colorado.


Little is known about the breeding of Canadian lynx. The domestic range of the female, as a rule, intersects with the range of the male and, sometimes, several females. This distribution, combined with sexual dimorphism, indicates that the species is probably polygynous.

Female estrus occurs only once a year and, accordingly, one litter is possible. The estrus lasts from 1 to 2 days. Mating falls in February and March. The gestational period (pregnancy) lasts from 8 to 10 weeks. Females give birth to their cubs in fallen logs, stumps, wood or tangles of roots and branches. Such shelters are supposed to protect lynxes from potential predators. As a rule, the litter consists of 2-3 kittens, although the number of cubs can be in the range from 1 to 5. At birth, lynx weigh about 200 g and have a well-developed hairline. Lactation lasts 5 months, but kittens eat meat at the age of one month.

Males are not caring parents. All responsibilities for raising offspring are assigned to the females. Mothers teach their young on hunting techniques and other vital skills. Lynxes remain with their mother until the next winter breeding season. Siblings can live together for some time after separation from their mother. Females become sexually mature at the age of 21 months, and males - 33 months.


Canadian lynx is strictly carnivorous. American hare is of particular importance in the diet of these cats and occupies from 35 to 97%. Every 8-11 years there is a shortage of hares. If there is no access to hares, they can prey on rodents, birds, moles, squirrels and young ungulates. Canadian lynx eat one hare every one to two days, so every day they eat 0.6-1.2 kg of food. In autumn and winter, lynx feeds on deer and other large ungulates. They also consume carcasses left by human hunters.

North American lynx hunt at dusk or at night, when American whites are particularly active. Lynxes rely on their eyesight and hearing to locate prey. A Canadian lynx chases a hare, then lashes out at it and kills it with a bite over its head, throat or back of its head. Young ungulates, lynxes bite by the throat and wait until the animal dies. They can immediately eat prey or hide it in snow and leaves, and eat it over the next few days.


Canadian lynxes are solitary territorial animals. Although the domestic ranges of several females may overlap, males occupy separate territories. The home range of the male includes the range of one or more females and their cubs. The size of the occupied territories varies from 11 to 300 square kilometers. Adults, as a rule, avoid each other, with the exception of the winter breeding season.

North American lynxes, in the first place, they rely on their sight, but they also have well-developed hearing. Lynx mainly hunts at night. Nevertheless, activity can be observed in the afternoon. Usually they chase prey and then jump on it, although some individuals can wait for their prey in ambush for several hours. The lynx is able to walk 8-9 km every day to provide itself with food and moves at a speed of 0.75-1.46 km / h. These are good swimmers and skilled climbers, however, they hunt only on the ground.

Females and cubs sometimes hunt rabbits in groups. One lynx scares the prey, and the rest line up and catch it. This method of hunting can be very successful and is important in the development of hunting techniques among young individuals.

Communication and perception

Communication and perception are similar to other feline ones. In addition to good vision, to facilitate hunting, these animals have excellent hearing. Smells used in marking the area. Tactile communication can occur between familiar individuals, as well as mothers and offspring. Vocalization is also used.


Canadian lynx, in the seventeenth century, was hunted because of their valuable fur. However, after the introduction of restrictions on trade in furs of large cats, hunting for lynx has significantly decreased. North American lynxes help control the population of small mammals, such as American squirrels and voles, which are agricultural and forestry pests.


The habitat covers western Canada, Alaska and the northern regions of the US states of Oregon, Idaho, Colorado and Wyoming. In Alaska, the species is absent in the Yukon and Kuskokvim deltas and in the south of the peninsula. It is also not observed on the northern coast of the mainland.

Canadian lynxes were originally distributed from the border of forests in the Arctic to the taiga in Canada and the United States. At the moment, their distribution is associated with the habitat (Lepus americanus), which forms the basis of the diet of predators. They are occasionally observed in the province of New Brownswick and were exterminated on the territory of Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island.

In 1960, a small isolated population was discovered in New Hampshire in the northeastern United States.

These mammals inhabit mountain forests and wooded valleys, a little less often the tundra and open spaces. To date, 3 subspecies are known. Subspecies L.c. mollipilosus is found in Alaska, and L.c. subsolanus on the island of Newfoundland.

Lynx canadensis (Kerr, 1792)

Range: Mainland North of the USA and Canada. Canada currently accounts for approximately 95% of its former habitat, approximately 5,500,000 km². In contrast to the Canadian, the range of lynx in the adjacent northern regions of the United States was significantly reduced and fragmented.

A medium-sized cat with a face widened from whiskers, large soft legs, black tassels on the ears and a short black tail claw. The coat is reddish-brown, lighter in winter, with a light gray or white “bloom”. The rare color phase "blue lynx" has a pale, gray-blue color, which indicates partial albinism.

Sexual dimorphism in size is moderate, males on average 15-25% larger than females. Males are on average 80-90 cm long and weighing 9-14 kg, females are 76-84 cm long and weigh 8-11 kg. However, differences in lynx sizes are found across Canada with larger individuals in the northern regions.

Due to the long coat, especially in winter, lynxes look much larger than they actually are.

Canadian lynx is biologically closely linked to the American hare (Lepus americanus) - its main prey. The size and density of lynx populations directly depends on the number of white hares. In most populations, the cyclicality is based on an 8–11 year old base. Lynx may disappear completely on the periphery of the range, but some areas within the normal distribution of the species may be deprived of lynx for several years, when the minimum population continues. At this time, lynxes often make large movements (more than 500 km), in search of white hares to the periphery of the range, where they usually do not occur. In such places, lynx populations can persist for several years and, under favorable circumstances, can even breed.

Lynxes occupy the boreal, subboreal and western mountain forests of North America. Although they are found in many types of forests, they reach a high density in boreal and mixed forests with a predominance of spruce, pine and fir and a variable component of deciduous trees. They also live in subarctic forests with a predominance of fir and birch. On the coast and in New England, lynx lives among Canadian fir and black spruce, often associated with spruce swamps. In western Canada, lynxes are found in aspen forests. In the western mountains, they are found mainly in the subalpine forest zone at an altitude of 1200 to 3000 m.

Lynx prefer old forests, over 20 years old, young forests are usually avoided.

White hare is a key component in the lynx diet throughout North America, containing from one third to almost 100%. About a lynx catches 0.8-1.6 hares per day. Other prey are red squirrels, mice and voles, flying squirrels, ground squirrels, beavers, muskrats, black grouse and partridges, and sometimes other birds and mammals. The destruction by the lynx of the red fox, like other lynxes, occurs again mainly during periods of low density of hares.

Canadian lynxes are passively territorial and use feces, spraying urine to mark their site.

The territories of females and males completely overlap, and the overlap of individuals of the same sex is usually insignificant. Conflicts between lynxes are rare, but violent clashes occur, especially during the years of food shortages.

The sizes of personal plots vary depending on the region, gender, season, and cyclic phase. They can be in the range of 8-738 km². During high hare densities in northern lynx populations, the area of ​​males is about 20-45 km², females 13-21 km², while low hare densities, territories increase by 2-10 times.

As a rule, males are larger, but not always.

The mating season is in March - early April and the couple can stay together for several days. Females mate with only one male in one season, however, a male can mate with several females. Within one hour, mating can occur up to 6 times. In periods of high hare abundance, all adult females ovulate every year. Pregnancy is about 60-65 days. Most females give birth from the last decade of May to early June. When rabbits give birth in abundance and one-year-old females, but their birth can be delayed by about 2-3 weeks compared with adult females.

With an increase in the hare population and in their peak phase of the cycle, litters of adult female lynxes average 4-5 kittens, survival is high (50-83%). What can not be said about young females. Even with a high number of rabbits in the south-central Yukon, the survival of kittens in one-year-old mothers was low.

With a decrease in the number of hares in adults and one-year-old females, fertility decreases. In periods of low hare density, very few one-year-old females give birth at all. The survival of kittens also decreases to almost zero in 1-2 years after a sharp decrease in the number of hares.

Lynx weighs 175 to 235 g at birth and initially has grayish fur with black markings. Kittens are blind and helpless at birth, but they grow and develop quite quickly. Eyes open at 2 weeks, they are bright blue, but as they grow older they become brown-brown. Mother feeds kittens milk for up to 12 weeks (2-3 months), although lynx has already received solid food from 6 weeks. At first they play more with food, but this is an important element for teaching hunting skills.

They leave the nest at about 5 weeks old, and begin to take part in the hunt at the age of seven to nine months. For the winter, kittens stay with their mother in the winter and family groups begin to break up only in early March. Leaving the maternal site begins in late April to early May. Some young lynxes leave immediately, others remain in the natal area for up to one year after the first wintering.

These suggest that female couples mother-daughter or a pair of brother-sister are preserved in lynxes and provide a social system based on the maternal line of origin. Young females sometimes create personal territory on the territory of their mothers, and adult females can maintain contact with female descendants throughout their lives.

Lynx reaches physical maturity (full adult size) at the age of about 2 years. Females reach puberty at 10 months, males at 2-3 years.

In captivity, lynxes live to 22 years, in the wild rarely to 10 years, although the oldest age was recorded at 14.5 years.


- a graceful North American cat, the closest relative of the ordinary. Its range extends from the northern American states and further throughout Canada, where it inhabits mature coniferous forests with dense undergrowth. Less common in light forests, rocky areas and the tundra.

The color of the Canadian lynx varies from tan to gray on the back and sides with a large number of subtle black specks. The belly is often light gray or almost white, like wool. The coat is very long and thick, especially on the legs, the tail is short, ears with tassels of black hair crown the round head. In the photo below it is even something, only with tassels on the ears.

In size canadian lynx almost two inferior to the Eurasian species. The length of her body is from 0.7 to 1 meter, the tail is from 5 to 13 cm, the weight is from 4.5 to 17 kg. Males are slightly larger than females.

The predator leads mainly a nocturnal lifestyle, hiding during the day in clefts of rocks, under the roots of twisted trees and in other shelters. The animals spend most of the year alone in their territory, the area of ​​which varies from 11 to 300 square kilometers. Only during the breeding season do lynxes briefly pair up.

Literally immediately after mating, which takes place in February-March, the male leaves the female, and all care for the future fate of the offspring falls on her shoulders. Pregnancy lasts about 8-10 weeks. Litter, usually consisting of 2-3 kittens, is born in a secluded place.
Up to 5 months old, a female Canadian lynx feeds kittens with milk, although at the age of one month they begin to eat meat. Young animals remain with their mother until the next breeding season, after which they are expelled and forced to look for their own territory. Young individuals reach puberty at the age of one and a half to two years.

Thanks to well-developed vision and hearing, the Canadian lynx feels great hunting in complete darkness. The predator most often awaits his prey in ambush, overtaking it in several jumps. Sometimes a creeping up technique is also used.

Canadian lynxes are exclusively carnivores. A key place in their diet is, on the number of which directly affects the number of cats. In some regions, hares are their only target. Much less often, rodents, birds and fish become prey of a predator.

Canadian Lynx (Lynx canadensis) is a species of lynx that lives in North America (Alaska, Montana, Washington, Colorado, Idaho).

It is the closest relative of the common lynx (Lynx lynx).

North Americans are found mainly in the taiga, sometimes they can be found among the rocky mountains and in the tundra.

The habitats of these cats are closely related to the habitats of white hares, which are the main prey for these predators.

Canadian lynxes can live close to people, but people are avoided in every way.

There are two subspecies of the Canadian lynx:

Lynx canadensis canadensis Kerr, 1792, inhabiting much of North America.

Lynx canadensis subsolanus Bangs, 1897, living on Newfoundland Island.

With all the external similarities from the common lynx, the Canadian lynx differs primarily in its smaller size, the body length of this species is from 86 to 117 cm (in the common lynx from 80 to 130), the height at the withers is from 60 to 65 cm (in the common lynx to 70 cm.)

And the Canadian lynx weighs from 8 to 14 kg. (In zoos, the weight can reach up to 20 kg.). An average lynx has an average weight of 18 to 25 kg.

The fur is long - up to 5 centimeters and thick. The main color of the fur is grayish-brown or reddish with various marks of white color.

A white fur resembling snow flakes is visible on the sides of the face of a Canadian lynx, some representatives of this species have a rare, pearl blue, color.

Ears with black tassels, tail short black.

Long legs with wide feet and retractable claws. The front legs are slightly smaller in size than the hind legs.

The peculiar structure of the body determines increased jumping ability, agility, swiftness in attack, speed of running.

Lifestyle & Nutrition

Like all other lynxes, Canadian cats are single except for the breeding season.

Males constantly move in a separate territory, which can be more than 100 sq. Km, while at the same time they leave marks on the border of their site with urine and scratches on the trees.

The territories of females may partially overlap.

Confidently moving through deep and loose snow, the Canadian lynx remains invisible, hiding its tracks.

In search of food, lynxes have to travel long distances in any terrain, lynxes swim well even in cold water, cleverly move through trees and mountains.

Having a well-developed hearing and sharp vision, lynx hunts mainly at dusk or at night, although it can be active during the day.

He expects bad weather in a forest thicket or suitable cave.

Canadian lynx feeds mainly on hares, so the size of its population directly depends on the number of these animals.

In addition to the main diet, there can be rodents (squirrels, mice, beavers), red deer, foxes and birds (for example, pheasants).

The daily lynx menu consists of meat (1-3 kg per day).

Lynx chases prey, and then jumps on it, although they can hunt and wait for their prey in ambush for several hours.

Females and cubs sometimes hunt rabbits in groups. One lynx scares the prey, and the rest line up and catch it. This method of hunting can be very successful and is important in the development of hunting techniques among young lynxes.

Canadian lynx hides surplus food in specially dug hiding places, which are often found by smaller predators and quickly pulled away.

Well-fed lynxes prefer to rest, gaining strength for a new hunt.

The mating season of Canadian lynxes usually runs from February to March. At this time, the males and females are united in pairs, and near the possessions the male selects one or more females, fertilizes the chosen ones and retires home.

Caring for future cubs lies entirely with the mother.

Shortly before giving birth, she arranges a secluded den in dense bushes, crevices of rocks or hollows of trees, where the offspring await.

The duration of a normal pregnancy in a female is from 63 to 70 days, in May - June, from 1 to 5 kittens weighing up to 300 grams are born in lynxes.

In the first months, the mother feeds her cubs with milk, and from the third month she feeds rabbits and mice.

Lynx kittens live with their mother for up to 10 months, the female goes on a hunt for prey with five-month-old babies and follows this tradition for the entire period of cohabitation.

Having become sexually mature, young lynxes begin an independent life, and their mother begins a new search for the future of dad.

Canadian Lynx, Canada lynx. Latin name: Lynx canadensi. Other names: North American Lynx

North American Lynx - lives in wooded areas of Alaska, Canada, as well as the states of Washington, Minnesota, Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine. It is not precisely known whether lynxes breed in Wisconsin. Most lynxes in the US states appear to be migrants from Canada. The total area of ​​their range is estimated by specialists at 7.7 million km2.

Like all lynxes, the Canadian species has long fur on the sides of the muzzle, black fur tassels on the ears and a short tail with a black tip. The legs of the lynx are long, especially the hind legs, the foot is wide. The fur is very thick and thick, the remaining hairs are about 5 cm long. In winter, with furry “skis” on their paws, like snowshoes that hold the lynx on the surface of deep snow and the lynx does not fall into the snowdrifts.

The North American lynx is easy to distinguish from short-tailed cats by tail: it has the entire tail tip black, while in cats the end is black only from above, and the lower part of the tail end is white. The lynx also has a wider foot, thicker fur on its face, paws of a longer length, tassels on the ears are also longer. The toenails are retractable, used by trot to capture prey.

It differs from the red-haired lynx by the completely black tip of the tail. The color is not so contrasting, the grayish-brown, reddish background of the fur is overlapped with white marks. Canadian Lynx is probably a descendant of the ancestor of the Eurasian Lynx, which migrated to North America during one of the last ice ages.

Color: The color of the coat is reddish, white marks are scattered over the main background, which give the impression of being covered with snow. There are no spots, and if there are, they are bright and difficult to distinguish in the main color. On the black ears behind there is a white spot, like many cats. There is an unusual color of the “blue lynx”, in which the fur is very light, almost white.

This species of lynx is half smaller than the Eurasian lynx, body length 80-117 cm, height at the withers 60-65 cm.

Weight: its weight is 8-14 kg, less often up to 18 kg

Life expectancy: Under natural conditions, they live up to 10, rarely up to 15 years.

Habitat: Canadian Lynx lives in North American taiga forests (sometimes in the tundra or in the rocky mountains). Lynxes are closely associated with the hare, the white hare, as its main feed source, and it is usually found in high densities in coastal areas and areas of young growing forests, such as after forest fires. Such areas attract hares and therefore lynx also concentrates here. Canadian lynxes use mature forest plantations and occupy agricultural land, but only if they are interrupted by sufficient areas of wooded area that is intensively populated by hares. Lynx can live in close proximity to human housing, but they avoid meeting people, they are rarely seen and little is known about their daily habits.

Enemies: Canadian lynx is chased by a wolf, coyote and mountain lion (puma), occasionally by a bear. Kittens are often attacked by large owls.

Many lynxes die under the wheels of vehicles when crossing numerous roads, and also falls into traps, as these animals are hunted because of the beautiful fur. L. people destroy their habitat (lumberjacks, farmers).

Lynx feeds exclusively on Lepus americanus hares (about 75% of their diet), therefore it occurs in hare habitats; the lynx population is completely dependent on the growth or decrease in the number of white hares. During a period of depression in their numbers, lynx can switch to feeding on birds, small rodents and other animals (squirrels, beavers, muskrat). In winter, due to the deep snow cover, it can prey on ungulates - red deer or snow sheep. In famine, the Canadian lynx does not disdain carrion: the remains of a dead deer, caribou, moose.

Unlike its European relatives, the Canadian lynx leads a predominantly sevenfold lifestyle and usually hunts at dawn or in the evening twilight. In search of prey for the day can overcome up to 19 km. In extreme weather, they take refuge in caves or in trees.

Adult lynxes are solitary hunters, although the mother and her youth will often hunt together. The main way of hunting is to hide at a fresh hare track, and then an unexpected attack on the victim.

If the prey is great and the lynx cannot eat it right away, it hides the remains of the meal, and then returns to it. Although the lynx is not a timid hunter, it rarely disputes its prey if it is confronted by other carnivores and leaves them its uneaten prey. Lynx often climbs trees and there, comfortably sitting on a horizontal branch, eats its prey.

Biologists have estimated that for every animal caught by a trot (white hare), there are ten claws that escaped it. On average, a lynx kills every second night, eating 150-200 hares a year.

Social structure: Lynxes are timid and prefer to live alone, except for the period when females acquire offspring. The area of ​​individual hunting sections of lynx ranges from 4 to 25 km2 in females and from 4 to 70 km2 in males. Patches of males usually surround plots of females, but some of their territories may overlap.

Lynxes regularly mark the boundaries of their site with urine, leaving marks on trees and rocks.

Reproduction: In the breeding season, one male lynx can mate with several females living with him in the neighborhood. As soon as they mated, the male and female go their own ways. Males does not take any part in the education of youth.

The lynx female before childbirth arranges a den under boulders or roots of logging, in hollow tree trunks. Babies are born helpless and blind, weighing about 280 grams and 25 cm in length.

Their eyes open on the 10-17th day, and on the 24-30th day they can already leave the den. Their fur coat is spotted, which disappears as kittens grow older. Mother feeds them milk for 3-5 months.

In general, all reproduction in a lynx depends on the number of white hare and on the cycles of its development. When production is in short supply, the reproduction and survival of youth is at the lowest level. So, at the highest peak of the number of hares, up to 100% of mature females participate in reproduction, and young people in the lynx population make up 60-80%, at the lowest peak - both indicators are close to 0. Over 90% of the lynx youth survive before and during the cycles of population decline hares, falling to 9-40% in the first and second years, respectively, following the collapse of the hare population.

Season / breeding season: end of January or February.

Puberty: Young lynxes reach maturity at the age of 23 months, but they can start breeding at the age of 10 months in the case when there is an abundance of food.

Pregnancy: pregnancy 63-67 days

Offspring: 1-8 kittens are born in a female, and their number depends on how much the mother is provided with food. Litter size is higher (average 3.8-5.3) when production is plentiful, and lower (2.3-3.5) when production is scarce.

These animals are hunted, their fur is valued.

As predators, Canadian lynxes are important in regulating the population of their prey. This is especially notable in the lynx and hare population cycle.

These animals are listed in CITES II. It is believed that there are no more than 50,000 adult mature individuals, but with a decreasing tendency due to harassment and degradation of habitats and primary prey.

Canadian lynxes are threatened with extinction, which is associated not only with the destruction of their habitats. Due to the sharp cyclicality of the number of white hares, the lynx is at high risk of destruction, since many lynxes fall into the traps. At a low point in the hare cycle, the lynx, having lost its main prey, becomes more vulnerable to being trapped, as they scatter in search of food, traveling long distances and, therefore, are caught in large quantities by all kinds of fishing gear.

The hare and lynx cycle was first discovered in the Hudson Company records dating back to the early 1800s. Peaks in the hare population follow approximately every ten years, and lynx peaks follow them with a short delay, usually 1-2 years. The predation of a lynx hare is one of the factors that control the cycle. Lynx density fluctuates with the hare cycle and is approximately 30 lynx per 100 km2 at the peak of numbers, and about 3/100 km2 in the winter following the collapse of the hare.

Among experts, there is an opinion that the lynx living in Newfoundland should be considered a separate subspecies - Lynx canadensis subsolanus.