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The Iberian Lynx

The Grand Mediterranean Cat

It is a graceful-looking feline of medium size (males weighing an average of 13 kg and almost 10 kg for females) with long legs and a short tail. Its face is round, with large ears topped with points of black hair and long sideburns hanging from its cheeks that increase in length with age and are longer in males than in females. Those long sideburns favour their ability to camouflage by breaking down the silhouette of his head. Its fur is of brownish tones mottled with black.

It lives in the Mediterranean forest and scrub in very restricted areas of the peninsula between 400 and 1,300 meters, except in Doñana, where it lives at sea level. It likes areas with closed vegetation to rest and reproduce, although most of the time it is solitary and nomadic.

The Iberian Lynx is a specialist when it comes to hunting rabbits, which make up 80% of its usual diet. It can also consume geese, small mammals or birds depending on the time of year, the availability of prey and the area where it is found. It is an agile hunter, sneaking up on prey and pouncing on it quickly.

Although the species has gone from “Critically endangered” to “Endangered” thanks to the support of administrations and individuals, and the awareness of the population in general, some of the threats to this species still exist, such as the destruction and fragmentation of their habitat, the decrease in rabbit populations and road accidents.

Source: National Parks Network / Ministry for the Ecological Transition and the Demographic Challenge