The Wolf Intelligencer


Iberian Lynx (Lynx pardinus)

Benign juvenile idiopathic epilepsy in captive Iberian lynx (Lynx pardinus) in the ex situ conservation program (2005–2019). Mínguez JJ, El Bouyafrouri Y, Godoy JA, Rivas A, Fernández J, Asensio V, Serra R, Perez-Aspa MJ, Lorenzo V. BMC Veterinary Research. 2021 Dec

Iberian Lynx (Lynx pardinus) personality: A rating assessment with ex Situ Conservation Program sample. Úbeda Y, Asensio V, Rivas A, Serra R, Fatjó J, Llorente M, Villaespesa F. Journal of Comparative Psychology. 2021 Jul


Research on felid personality has been conducted in a few species. Further research on new species could be highly informative in regard to the influence that adaptation to different ecological challenges has on felid personality. We evaluated the personality of 58 Iberian lynxes (Lynx pardinus) hosted at 3 different breeding centers for reintroduction. A total of 43 adjectives obtained from previous studies with felids were assessed by 30 raters according to the knowledge on the lynx behavior they acquired by observing a live video feed of the animals, finding acceptable standards of interrater reliability. Principal components analysis and regularized exploratory factor analysis revealed 4 factors. Based on the pattern of factor loadings and on previous labeling in felid personality research, we labeled the factors as Boldness, Dominance, Neuroticism, and Attentiveness. The results were similar to that of the previous studies on felids, although some differences were found, which could be due to the evolutionary distance among species and to methodological differences among studies. Future research on endangered felids could provide insights into the influence of personality on conservation outcomes related to successful breeding and reintroduction. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2021 APA, all rights reserved)

Parasites of the Reintroduced Iberian Lynx (Lynx pardinus) and Sympatric Mesocarnivores in Extremadura, Spain. Figueiredo AM, de Carvalho LM, González MJ, Torres RT, Pla S, Núñez-Arjona JC, Rueda C, Vallverdú-Coll N, Silvestre F, Peña J, Carmena D. Pathogens. 2021 Mar


The Iberian lynx (Lynx pardinus) is one of the most endangered felid species in the world. Conservation efforts have increased its population size and distribution and reinforced their genetic diversity through captive breeding and reintroduction programmes. Among several threats that the Iberian lynx faces, infectious and parasitic diseases have underlined effects on the health of their newly reintroduced populations, being essential to identify the primary sources of these agents and assess populations health status. To achieve this, 79 fresh faecal samples from Iberian lynx and sympatric mesocarnivores were collected in the reintroduction area of Extremadura, Spain. Samples were submitted to copromicroscopic analyses to assess parasite diversity, prevalence, and mean intensity of parasite burden. Overall, 19 (24.1%, ±15.1–35.0) samples were positive for at least one enteric parasite species. Parasite diversity and prevalence were higher in the Iberian lynx (43.8%) compared with the others mesocarnivores under study (e.g., the red fox Vulpes vulpes and the Egyptian mongoose Herpestes ichneumon). Ancylostomatidae and Toxocara cati were the most prevalent (15.6%) parasites. Obtained results revealed that Iberian lynx role as predator control might have reduced parasite cross-transmission between this felid and mesocarnivores due to their decreasing abundances. Surveillance programs must include regular monitoring of this endangered felid, comprising mesocarnivores, but also domestic/feral and wild cat communities.

Disease Surveillance during the Reintroduction of the Iberian Lynx (Lynx pardinus) in Southwestern Spain. Nájera F, Grande-Gómez R, Peña J, Vázquez A, Palacios MJ, Rueda C, Corona-Bravo AI, Zorrilla I, Revuelta L, Gil-Molino M, Jiménez J. Animals. 2021 Feb


The restoration of Iberian lynx (Lynx pardinus) populations in Extremadura (Southwestern Spain) have been carried out since 2014. One of the measures to ensure the success of this program is to examine the effects that diseases may have on reintroduction. Since diseases may be greatly located at certain sites because of the specific ecological requirements of the pathogens and/or vectors, reintroduced individuals may present a risk of infection once released. To determine which pathogens the reintroduced individuals may encounter, we performed a molecular and sero-epidemiological survey in reintroduced and wild-born lynxes. From 2015 to 2019, 69 Iberian lynxes (40 reintroduced and 29 wild-born) were sampled and screened against 10 viral, bacterial and piroplasmid agents. In parallel, 195 sympatric carnivores from the families Canidae, Felidae, Viverridae, Herpestidae and Mustelidae were tested against current or past infections to six common canine/feline viruses. In the Iberian lynx, low contact rates of active infection were obtained for the feline leukemia provirus (FeLV: 1.5%; 1/67), feline parvovirus (FPV: 1.5%; 1/67) and Cytauxzoon sp. (6.7%; 1/15). We also confirmed the emergence of Aujeszky’s disease (suid herpesvirus-1) in this population (SuHV-1: 11.8%; 2/17). Evidence of previous exposure was detected for canine distemper virus (CDV: 5.8%; 3/52), feline coronavirus (1.9%; 1/52), FPV (7.7%; 1/13) and feline calicivirus (FCV: 5.3%; 1/19). From 25 recovered lynx carcasses, we could confirm infectious etiology involvement in the death of four individuals (SuHV-1 in two individuals, coinfection of Cytauxzoon spp. and Aeromonas veronii in one lynx and a Streptococcus canis myositis in another lynx). We confirmed the circulation of CDV, FPV, FeLV, FCV and the feline immunodeficiency virus within the sympatric carnivore community. Due to the low contact rate of infectious agents in such a small, endangered population, we recommend continuing a disease surveillance program to determine the prognostic factors of survival, understand the role that disease may play during the reintroduction and anticipate disease outbreaks that may pose a risk for the entire reintroduced population.

Natural Protected Areas as Providers of Ecological Connectivity in the Landscape: The Case of the Iberian Lynx. Barbero-Bermejo I, Crespo-Luengo G, Hernández-Lambraño RE, Rodríguez de la Cruz D, Sánchez-Agudo JÁ. Sustainability. 2021 Jan


The design of conservation plans for the improvement of habitats of threatened species constitutes one of the most plausible possibilities of intervention in the structure and composition of the landscape of a large territory. In this work we focus on the Iberian lynx in order to establish potential ecological corridors using ecoinformatic tools from the GIS environment to improve connectivity between the existing natural spaces within the scope of its historical distribution. We processed 669 records of the presence of the lynx and six predictor variables linked to the habitat of the species. With this, corridors have been generated between natural areas. The determination of possible bottlenecks or dangerous areas (e.g., hitches on highways) allows for focusing efforts on their conservation. This type of approach seeks to improve efficiency in the design of measures aimed at expanding the territory’s capacity to host its populations, improving both its viability and that of all the other species that are linked to it. The proposals for action on the specific areas defined by the models elaborated in this work would imply interventions on the land uses and existing vegetation types in order to improve connectivity throughout the territory and increase the resilience of its ecosystems. View Full-Text

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