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|Common Name||Iberian Lynx|
|Range||Iberian Peninsula in Spain|
|Conservation Status |
Spanish/Iberian Lynx are similar in appearance to Eurasian lynx but smaller. Spanish lynx have the characteristically bobbed tail, tuffed ears and jaws, spotted coat, muscular body, long legs and quick reflexes.
The majority of the Spanish lynx populations are restricted to the Iberian Peninsula in Spain, an area of about 14,000 km2 (540 sq miles), with a few small populations in the Algarve mountains and Serra da Malcata Nature Reserve in Portugal.
The Spanish populations live in controlled hunting zones called ‘cotos’. Although critically endangered, these animals are still on the offensive animal list and may be shot on sight, except for when they range within National Parks and reserves. The lynx living in Portugal are thought to number only about 50 animals.
It usually hunts rabbits, birds, and fish, but also can take young deer. In some of their range, they will hunt larger ungulates as much as three to four times their own size, most notably reindeer.
The main reasons for the declining of this species are due to hunting and habitat shrinking. Lynxes are still trapped, and some are killed on roads.
Currently the Spanish government is attempting to set up a permanent and protected area for this lynx. Studies of these animals, with the help of radio collars, are giving researchers an idea of the total ranges of the lynx.