Iberian lynx set free in Spain travels 500km back to Portugal

In a true-life incredible journey, one of two Iberian Lynx let loose in Spain has travelled more than 500km and even crossed the Tejo to return to Portugal, the land of his birthplace.

Kahn was released with his brother Kentaro in Spain’s central Montes de Toledo at the end of last year.

While Kentaro made north for the Pyrenees, Kahn plotted an almost mirror-opposite journey southwest, ending most recently in Alqueva.

The big cats are being tracked via elaborate GPS collars with which they were fitted before their release.

According to the Life+Iberlince project, 100 lynx have now been released into the wild – the majority in Spain.

These two brothers were born in the Silves’ centre for Lynx reproduction.

As Life+Iberlince website explains, their incredible journey has shown conservationists that lynxes have “a great dispersion capacity”.

While Kentaro travelled an even greater kilometre distance that Khan, Khan showed huge ingenuity, managing to cross the Tejo, and stay for some time on an island. He arrived in Portugal in May.

Intriguing also is the information on what these big cats have been eating. Contrary to concerns that there would not be enough rabbit to sustain them in the wild, Life+Iberlince reveals they have survived on “other rodents and even deer”.

Recovery of this almost extinct species is now “very significant”, adds the site, “although there is still much work to do”.

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