Canada lynx

(Lynx canadensis)

Conservation Status
Canada lynx
Photo by Ramona Abrego
  IUCN Red List

LC - Least Concern

     
  NatureServe

N4? - Apparently Secure

S3 - Vulnerable

     
  Federal threatened      
  Minnesota

special concern

     
           
           
           
 
Description
 
 

Canada lynx is one of three wild cats found in Minnesota. It occurs throughout Canada and Alaska, where it is considered common. In the United States it is resident in Maine, Minnesota, Montana, and Washington, and it was successfully reintroduced into Colorado. In Minnesota it is a rare resident in the Arrowhead region, a rare visitor in the north-central region, and absent in the remainder of the state (IUCN). It may venture much farther south when populations of snowshoe hares drop in the north.

Canada lynx is a medium-sized wild cat. Adults are 29 to 42 long not including the tail. It is about two times as large as a house cat and looks similar to the closely-related bobcat. The fur (pelage) is highly variable in color. It is usually yellowish-brown above but may be grayish-brown, grayish-buff, or silvery-gray with an icy sheen (“blue”). In each case the color is uniform above with little to no dark markings. The underparts are white and may have a few dark spots. The tail is stubby, 2 to 5 long, and has a completely black tip. The ears each have a tuft of erect black hairs about 1 long. In the winter the hair on each side of the face lengthens, giving a ruffled look. The feet are very large, optimized for walking on soft snow.

 
     
 

Size

 
 

Total length: 29 to 42

Tail: 2 to 5

 
     
 

Sign

 
 

 

 
     
 

Similar Species

 
     
     
 
Habitat
 
 

Forests, swamps

 
     
 
Biology
 
 

Behavior

 
 

 

 
     
 

Lifespan

 
 

10 to 14.5 years in the wild

 
     
 

Life Cycle

 
 

 

 
     
 

Food

 
 

Mostly snowshoe hares, but also rodents and birds.

 
     
 
Distribution
 
 

Distribution Map

 

Sources

6, 15, 29, 30.

 
       
    Normal range, resident and visitor  
    Years of low supply of snowshoe hares in the north: 1962-63 and 1972-73  
       
  6/29/2020      
         
 

Occurrence

 
 

Common in Canada. Uncommon in northern United States. Rare in Minnesota.

 
         
 
Taxonomy
 
  Class Mammalia (mammals)  
  Subclass Theria  
  Infraclass Eutheria (placentals)  
  Magnorder Boreoeutheria  
  Superorder Laurasiatheria  
  Order Carnivora (carnivores)  
  Suborder Feliformia (cat-like carnivores)  
 

Family

Felidae (cat)  
 

Subfamily

Felinae (small cats)  
 

Genus

Lynx (bobcats, lynxes)  
       
 

Subordinate Taxa

 
 

Unitl recently, three subspecies of Lynx canadensis were recognized. In 2017, following a revision of the family Felidae, the subspecies were rejected due to the similarity of morphological characteristics.

 
       
 

Synonyms

 
 

Felis lynx

Lynx lynx

 
       
 

Common Names

 
 

Canada lynx

Canadian lynx

lynx

 
       

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Glossary

Pelage

The coat of a mammal, consisting of fur, wool, or hair, and including a soft undercoat and stiff guard hairs.

       
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Ramona Abrego
       

Captive cat

  Canada lynx   Canada lynx
       
  Canada lynx    
       

Captive – Wildlife Science Center

  Canada lynx    
       
       
MinnesotaSeasons.com Photos
   
       
       

 

Camera

     
 
Slideshows
 
 
     
     
     

 

slideshow

       
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Other Videos
 
  Epic Hunting Chase of the Canadian Lynx and Snowshoe Hare in HD
The Animal Experts
 
   
 
About

Jul 15, 2015

One of nature's greatest moments comes to life between 2 animals living in a snow covered terrain, it’s the Epic life or death chase of the Canadian Lynx and the Snowshoe Hare. Epic does not get better than this. Enjoy.

Music in this video

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Song: The Last of Humanity-8228

Artist: Per Kiilstofte

Album: Content ID

Licensed to YouTube by AdRev for Rights Holder; AdRev Publishing, and 3 Music Rights Societies

   
       
  Canada Lynx Family on the Hunt...
ThomasJSpence images
 
   
 
About

Feb 25, 2018

This family of Canada lynx (Lynx canadensis) hunts well together. While the kittens are in the roadside woods stalking snowshoe hare, the mother waits in the road for them to flush the hare into the roadway. Though I missed the actual flush and grab, I was able to catch the before and after. The actual kill happened in about 3 seconds and I had lowered the camera for a few seconds to watch, so I missed it :). It's unbelievable how fast they are. The mother then makes sure the hare is dead, then tears it into a few pieces so everyone can have a chunk to dine on. The whole hunt, kill and eat lasted about an hour and a half. They were not too concerned with my presence. At one point, three of the cats walked RIGHT by me as I took photos. After they ate, they lounged in the road for 15 minutes, licking paws, laying down, then they resumed the hunt for more hare. I have read that they will eat about one snowshoe hare per day, so they still had a lot of hunting to do to feed the group.

   
       

 

Camcorder

         
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Ramona Abrego

Location: Wildlife Science Center

Captive

Canada lynx


Ramona Abrego
2/14/2015

Location: Wildlife Science Center

Captive cat

Canada lynx


     
     
 
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Created: 6/29/2020

Last Updated:

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