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Canada Lynx


Quick Facts

Scientific name: Lynx canadensis
Class: Mammal
Length: about 35 inches (90 centimeters)
Tail length: about 10 inches (25 centimeters)
Shoulder height: 28 inches (70 centimeters)
Weight: around 22 pounds (10 kilograms)
Life span: about 14 years in the wild; up to 26 years in zoos
Gestation: About 65 days
Number of offspring: 1 to 4 at a time
Age of maturity: Males: 30 months; Females: 20 months
Conservation status: Threatened


A northern resident

Canada Lynx (also known as Canadian lynx) live throughout Canada and in northern areas of the United States.  They are typically found in forests but can also live in tundra regions.

Not too picky…as long as it’s meat!

In the wild, lynx eat snowshoe hares, rodents, and will also feast on carcasses left behind by human hunters.  Lynx are adept climbers and swimmers – they have been known to go fishing when the opportunity presents itself.  Zoo lynx get a special meat mixture made especially for felines, along with minerals and vitamins.

Not your household kitty cat

Lynx fur is typically yellowish-brown but can include some gray. Their ears boast long, dark hairs that point straight up and act as hearing aids.  Adult lynx as well as kittens display this ear trait.  Canada lynx also have a black-tipped tail.  Lynx have large, furry paws that act as snow shoes.

A nocturnal loner

Lynx usually live alone in a territory that encompasses anywhere from 5 to 100 square miles, and they are nocturnal so they sleep during the day.  Lynx are likely polygynous (i.e. they do not “mate for life”), and females provide all prenatal and postnatal care and feeding of their young.



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