One of eight lynx reintroduced under the Life Lynxconnect programme dies

Deceased lynx
The cause of death is unknown, although it is not associated with any traumatic cause.

One of the eight lynxes reintroduced through the Life Lynxconnect programme in the ‘Tierras Altas de Lorca’, called Tiko, has been found dead. For the moment, the cause is unknown and only the necropsy report will be able to provide information on the cause of death, although it is not associated with any traumatic cause (being run over).

According to the established protocol, it is necessary to wait for the aforementioned report, whose results will take some weeks to be known, as they include analytical tests that will have to be carried out outside the Region of Murcia, according to sources from the Community in a press release.

The lynx tracking team that was monitoring the lynx, on observing that it was approaching the city of Lorca again, decided to go in search of it. Tracking is done by means of GPS collars and radio tracking, so it is not always possible to see the animal. On this occasion, when it was located, it was found to be in poor condition.

The Iberian lynx was captured last Thursday in the countryside, near an abandoned feedlot in the Lorca hamlet of El Consejero, and died this Sunday night at the Wildlife Recovery Centre (CRFS), where it was not possible to bring it back due to the extremely thin conditions in which it was found.

Tiko, who arrived in March together with Tahúlla, thanks to the Life Lynxconnect project, was released on 28 April after the opening of the acclimatisation enclosure. It was the specimen that arrived in the city of Lorca, where it was collected to be released back into its habitat.

At present, the Region of Murcia has seven specimens of Iberian lynx, three of which are free, which are those that arrived in March, and the last four that have been in the adaptation enclosures since 5 June, the protocol prior to the release in the Highlands of Lorca, where the other three are.

On the basis that the adaptation period after release from the acclimatisation enclosure is considered critical in the reintroduction of the Iberian lynx, the main cause of death of this species is roadkill, which was not the case with Tiko, whose death is not associated with any traumatic cause.

This type of specimen tends to move over a wide radius before settling down. According to the dean magazine of environmental information ‘Quercus’, more than half of the casualties of these specimens are attributed to being run over, the second cause being poaching and pathologies of various kinds.

Lynxconnect is a transnational project between Spain and Portugal, financed by the European Union to develop joint actions for the conservation of the Iberian lynx (Lynx pardinus). Its main objective is to connect all lynx core areas by creating new areas of presence in intermediate zones and to create new core areas, so that the global Iberian lynx population behaves as a self-sustainable metapopulation.

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