10 Interesting Facts About The European Lynx

Noah YoungJanuary 6, 2023
Photo by Александр Лич on pexelsPhoto by Александр Лич on pexels

1. The lynx lynx (from Greek λύγξ – “light”, “shine”) got its Latin name because of its sharp vision. The ancient Greeks believed that the lynx could see through objects. The Polish astronomer Jan Hevelius named the constellation after the lynx in 1690. He explained the choice of the name: “In this part of the sky there are only small stars, and you have to have lynx eyes to distinguish and recognize them”.

2. Lynx is the northernmost cat: in Scandinavia, it is found even beyond the Arctic Circle. Lynx is well adapted to the harsh frost and snow: its paws don’t fall into the snow due to its long and dense fur.

3. Lynx in the Carpathians usually lives in deaf and remote forests. It rests on rocks and stones beyond human reach. In winter they can go down for hunting lower, where there is less snow.

4. There are many options for coloration of the lynx, depending on the geographical area: from reddish-brown to pale-smoke, with more or less pronounced spotting on the back, sides, and paws.

5. Lynxes can jump 4 m in length, but they never jump from trees for prey: they hunt from ambushes.

6. Thanks to the tassels on his ears lynx have an incredible hearing, it can hear the footsteps of a man for a few kilometers, so catching a lynx is very difficult.

7. Lynx never attacks people or other large predators, such as bears or wolves. Lynx hides the remains of its food under rocks, leaves, or branches. It hunts hares, birds, chamois, boars, and sometimes stray dogs and cats, but never cattle, unlike other predators.

8. Lynxes live alone. However, the individual section of the male includes sections of two or even three females. A pair is most often found during the mating period. But even during the year they willingly communicate at meetings, during which the lynx sniff each other and woke their foreheads.

9. Lynx can live in captivity for up to 25 years, and in the wild up to 17 years.

10. The image of a lynx is widely used in heraldry – on coats of arms of cities and countries. In 2001, the National Bank of Ukraine issued a commemorative “lynx” coin worth 2 hryvnias. The reverse of the coin shows a lynx with a calf, which sits on a branch, and circular inscriptions: at the top – “common lynx”, at the bottom – “LYNX LYNX”. The artist is Vladimir Demyanenko.

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See also Interesting facts about the Canadian lynx