Did you know that the Iberian lynx is one of the animal species most at risk of extinction? In fact, according to the IUCN Red List, the Iberian lynx o Lynx pardinus has been in danger for a long time. There are several reasons that make this peculiar feline at risk of disappearing, such as the destruction of its habitat, its illegal hunting, among other reasons. But, luckily, we can act on all of them to stop this situation and, in addition, thanks to projects dedicated to this, we are already beginning to see improvement in the life of this wild animal.
In Green Ecologist we tell you why is the Iberian lynx in danger of extinction, how to help them overcome this situation and more details about this feline.
The Iberian lynx or Lynx Pardinus It is a medium-sized feline that we can find in the Iberian Peninsula, specifically in Spain and Portugal, in the south of the European continent. Its most distinctive features or characteristics, apart from its medium size within felines, are its triangular ears with hair on the tip, its small mane around the cheeks and neck, its spots, its tail between 8 cm and 15 cm and his way of hunting, since he is able to jump up to 5 meters away. Other important characteristics of the Iberian lynx are as follows:
The Lynx Pardinus, as its common name indicates, it is one of the felines that live in the Iberian Peninsula. Formerly they had a great distribution in this territory but for decades their population has been reduced to a few specimens in Andalusia. Today, as we will see later in this article, they live in more areas of this peninsula, between Spain and Portugal.
Specifically, they live in areas of Natural Parks, which are protected areas, in mountainous and semi-desert areas.
As we have already mentioned, it is a feline of average sizeFor example, it is much smaller than its relatives, lions, tigers, etc., but much larger than a wildcat or a domestic cat. Specifically, the measurements of this Iberian feline are between 85 cm and 110 cm in body length, without the tail, because if we have it, we must add between 8 cm and 15 cm. Regarding the weight of the Iberian lynx, this usually ranges between 12 kg and 15 kg in the case of males and between 9 and 15 kg for females.
Iberian lynxes feed mainly on rabbits, which abound in the Iberian Peninsula. However, they also eat birds, such as partridges and quails, other small mammals, such as voles, and reptiles, such as lizards.
Find out more about this animal in these articles on 21 animals in danger of extinction in Spain and Animals in danger of extinction in Europe.
Between the causes of the endangered Iberian lynx the following stand out:
About the year 2012, there were only 156 Iberian lynxes in freedom that were between Doñana and Sierra de Andújar, in Andalusia, but, luckily, it seems that the population of these cats began to improve and in recent years it is considered that their population has gone increasing, although very slowly since the dangers are still many.
Specifically, according to the latest records made by Life IberLince, the population has risen and in 2022 there were 589 lynxes in the wild, distributed among 8 population centers of the Iberian Peninsula. Now they are distributed mainly in Andalusia, where there are 448 specimens, but also in Extremadura (Badajoz), Castilla-La Mancha (Ciudad Real and Toledo) and in Portugal (Mértola).
That is why it is vital that we continue to help the conservation of this Iberian feline and its habitat, since it is being shown in recent years that the efforts made so far are proving positive and the species to be on the way to recovery, although they are still very few.
To prevent the extinction of the Iberian lynx we can really do many things, both at a private level such as companies, associations, governments and public administrations. It is true that for decades there are already plans and projects underway to the conservation of the Iberian lynx, which are already giving results and for this reason the population has currently increased, although they continue to be within the margin of danger to be extinguished.
Some measures to prevent the extinction of the Iberian lynx are:
Here below you can see a video about this important topic, with images of Iberian lynxes in freedom in the Doñana National and Natural Park.
If you want to read more articles similar to Why is the Iberian lynx in danger of extinctionWe recommend that you enter our category of Endangered Animals.