In mid-May, two Eurasian lynxes were released into the Jura massif by the Center Athénas. They had been taken care of by the association in the autumn, after the loss of their mother. Their reintroduction is part of the National Action Plan for the protection of this endangered species.
Gex and Minos released
Gex and Minos are two small Eurasian lynxes: orphaned a few months ago and taken in by the Center Athénas, a wildlife sanctuary.
On May 10 and 12 they were released close to the place of their capture according to West France† They will be closely monitored using a VHF/GPS collar, equipment that will allow the association and local authorities to gather information about their rehabilitation in the natural environment.
Why protect lynxes?
If Gex and Minos have been the subject of so much concern, it’s because the Eurasian lynx is a nationally and internationally protected species. Disappeared in France at the beginning of the 20th century, it was reintroduced to the Vosges and Jura in the 1970s.
Today, the lynx is the largest wild cat in Europe and one of the three large carnivores present in metropolitan France (along with the brown bear and gray wolf). These predators keep ecosystems in balance, although they are also at the heart of use conflicts in the mountain environment.
A national action plan
According to Creusot info, the Eurasian lynx is today threatened by traffic accidents, but also by urbanization that severs the connections between populations. It is the subject of a brand new National Action Plan: a government instrument intended to restore certain endangered species to good conservation status.
“These actions are now part of the National Action Plan for the Conservation of the Eurasian Lynx, which, if in our opinion is insufficient in its objectives, has the merit of drawing attention to the urgency of implementing an ambitious policy for preserving biodiversity and this species.”
Gilles Moyne, Director of the Athénas Center for Ouest France
At the first news, Gex and Minos have grown accustomed to the wild life: Gex has even caught several foxes!