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ACTION TO SAVE THE BALKAN LYNX


Nature.

Urgent efforts are needed to save the Balkan lynx, the largest of Europe's wild cats, from extinction, conservationists say.

"Only around 100 of the big cats are thought to remain in existence, the largest numbers are found in the remote hills of western Macedonia, where they are considered a national symbol and appear on a coin" ,reported the BBC this week.

Several European groups are working together trying to gather more information on the endangered animal. They include the German Euronatur, the Norwegian Institute for Nature Research, the Swiss-based organization KORA and of course local Macedonian organisations.

According to Macedonian biologist, Dime Melovski, there are plans to gather information about the lynxes by using photosensors to photograph the animals and eventually capturing one for DNA analysis to reintroduce the Balkan lynx with breeding in captivity. The project is planned to last till the end of 2009.

"It's a very rare and sensitive animal, like a shadow moving in the trees, I never had a chance to see a lynx. I've only traced its footprints during the winter" ,said Zdravko Moteski, a hunter in the village of Lesnica in western Macedonia, who is helping experts to collect the information they need.

MD: Many allready thought there weren't any lynxes left in Macedonia, untill some months ago. We should really be aware of the fact that they are endangered and if we don't do anything about it Europe's largest wild cat will be nothing more than history. That's still a big problem in Macedonia, when there is seen some wild creature they will shoot it immediately for no reason, without thinking about the consequences to the nature.

  • [Balkan Lynx Compendium]
  • [Euronatur.org]
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    February 27 2010:
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