Canada lynx caught on video at Vermont refuge

Credit: Andrew Butler/USFWS

Video monitoring by refuge staff at the Silvio O. Conte National Fish and Wildlife Refuge captured footage of a Canada lynx on March 1 at the Nulhegan Basin Division in Brunswick, Vt. The camera was set up by refuge intern Andrew Butler as part of an ongoing monitoring effort, and has detected lynx on three separate occasions.

This indicates that lynx – a federally threatened species – are breeding in northern Vermont! Learn more.

Monitoring began in the winter of 2012 when Vermont Fish and Wildlife and refuge staff conducted winter track surveys, documenting a family group (adult and kittens). This past winter, wildlife biologist Rachel Cliche and Andrew continued conducting winter track surveys and documented another family group.

The Nulhegan Basin Division contains large tracts of spruce fir forest that supports snowshoe hare, the lynx’s main prey, and thus, provides the best lynx habitat in Vermont. However, predictions of warming temperatures and reduced snowfall in the coming years may cause the range of the lynx to shift northward because of reduced suitable habitat and a decreased ability to compete with other carnivores, such as fisher and bobcat. Future monitoring efforts will gather data on lynx use of the refuge and help inform habitat management to benefit the lynx and hare.

A large, carnivorous feline species, Canada lynx are rarely seen because they are nocturnal and secretive. They are similar to bobcats in appearance, but lynx have larger bodies and longer ear tufts than bobcats. The easiest way to distinguish a lynx from a bobcat is by the lynx’s solid black-tipped tail and enormous, furry paws.

Although only four confirmed sightings occurred in the state from the late 1700s to the early 2000s, lynx sightings have been on the increase every year since 2003. The department is conducting surveys to determine the full extent and distribution of lynx in Vermont. Read the rest of this April 2 news release from VT Fish & Wildlife.

12 Comments on “Canada lynx caught on video at Vermont refuge

  1. Pingback: Get your own road, kitty | The Balsamean™ – Scribblements from Balsamea, refuge for sylvans and friends

  2. Pingback: Endangered Canada Lynx are back in Vermont | SAVES Club

    • Used a 2012 Bushnell Trophy Cam with lures (ie. feathers and scent lures) that were situated along an old logging road. The feathers were hung along the logging road near the camera, and the scent was put on a tree on the opposite side of the trail from the camera. The feathers grabbed the attention of this lynx first!

  3. Pingback: How does a harsh winter affect wildlife? | U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Northeast Region

  4. I believe I saw a lynx run across I91, around 10pm, south of White River Junction in 2914/last summer (around Springfield). It was running east to west, horizontal-at a dead run. Probably 40-50lbs and with a bobbed tail.

  5. Pingback: A Rare, Secretive Creature with Big Furry Feet – The Story of Peluria | Flow

  6. Three summers ago I saw a lynx on our property in Owls Head, just across the border from North Troy. It walked confidently with a cool looking “shoulder roll”.

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