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Bringing Lynx Back to Britain

Canada Lynx were almost wiped out in the Western U.S., until a program to re-introduce them to Colorado was initiated in the 1990s. After a few false starts, the lynx learned to hunt squirrels and other prey instead of relying on the snowshoe hare. Can a similar program bring lynx back to Britain?

The Eurasian lynx was a part of the British forest ecosystem until about a thousand years ago. Conservationists at Lynx UK Trust plan to ship lynx from Eastern Europe to preserves in England and Scotland. The program is expected to benefit the forests themselves, by restoring the balance of nature with an apex predator. That is, if the environment is found to be suitable for them. The territory must be big enough, natural prey must be abundant enough, and the neighbors have to be okay with it. Read about the “rewilding” plan for lynx in Britain at Wired. -via Digg

(Image credit: Flickr user Vogelfoto69)

Trees were also part of the British forest ecosystem until a few thousand years ago. Reintroducing more of those first would help to successfully reintroduce Lynx.
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