Two young male lynx released in the Jura massif

Two orphan boreal lynx, collected last fall by the Athénas Center, were released in the Jura massif as part of the new national plan dedicated to this endangered species, the association and the services of the ‘State.

In distress after the disappearance of their mothers

Golden coat speckled with black and ears surmounted by a brush of hair, Gex and Minos were released on May 10 and 12 in the Haut-Jura, near the place where they had been captured by the Center Athénas, while they were in distress after the disappearance of their mothers. These two males were then bred by the Center Athénas, a Jura wildlife care association specializing in the preservation of the lynx.

They “were equipped with a VHF/GPS collar by the Athénas Center to guarantee their safety and collect information on their reintegration and rehabilitation in the natural environment“, underlined the Dreal (Regional Directorate for the Environment, Planning and Housing) Bourgogne-Franche-Comté in a press release. The location data of the collar, which will be unhooked automatically after one year, have already shown that “Gex had captured foxes, of which we found remains“, indicates the director of the center, Gilles Moyne. “This is a very good sign for the future“, according to him.

24 lynx released by the Athénas Center in 35 years

Gex and Minos are the 23rd and 24th lynx released by the Center Athénas in 35 years. A young female, who like Gex had been injured after losing her mother, will also be released in June. “These actions are now part of the National Action Plan for the Protection of the Eurasian Lynx, which, if in our opinion it is insufficient in its objectives, has the merit of focusing attention on the urgency of setting up an ambitious biodiversity and species conservation policy“, notes Mr. Moyne.

This national plan, published in mid-March, covers the period 2022-2026 and aims to better protect the largest wild cat present in Europe, which disappeared in France at the beginning of the 20th century before being reintroduced, and which remains threatened with extinction in France where it has nearly 150 individuals, of which about two-thirds in the Jura massif. The Eurasian Lynx is a species “strictly protected at international and national level, the state of conservation of which is a major challenge for France“, underlines the Dreal.

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