Eurasian lynx mating season takes place from February to April of each year. Each female is fertile only about three days during this time. Once a male and receptive female encounter each other, they follow each other for days, copulating many times a day. Once the female is no longer in estrus, the male will leave to find another mate. Females have only one mate per season.
Mating System: polygynous
Gestation lasts 67 to 74 days, with females giving birth in May. Breeding interval varies, depending on success of previous season. Females without a litter will breed every year, females with a litter will breed about every 3 years. Typically 2 to 3 cubs comprise a litter, although litter size can range from 1 to 5 kittens. Newborn cubs weigh 300 to 350g and are dependent on their mother for food and protection. They are weaned at 4 months and become independent at around 10 months. Females become sexually mature at 2 years of age and can remain so up to 14 years of age, whereas males mature at 3 years of age and can reproduce up to age 17.
Breeding interval: Eurasian lynx males breed once yearly. Females breed once a year when there is no litter, and every three years when they successfully breed.
Breeding season: Eurasian lynx breed from February to April.
Range number of offspring: 1 to 5.
Average number of offspring: 2 to 3.
Range gestation period: 67 to 74 days.
Average gestation period: 69 days.
Range birth mass: 300 to 350 g.
Average weaning age: 4 months.
Average time to independence: 10 months.
Average age at sexual or reproductive maturity (female): 2 years.
Average age at sexual or reproductive maturity (male): 3 years.
Key Reproductive Features: iteroparous ; seasonal breeding ; gonochoric/gonochoristic/dioecious (sexes separate); induced ovulation ; viviparous
Average number of offspring: 2.
Average age at sexual or reproductive maturity (male)
Sex: male: 1004 days.
Average age at sexual or reproductive maturity (female)
Sex: female: 639 days.
Females find a safe den space for their kittens, as in a hollow log or crevice. Females nurse and protect their young until independence. Once the cubs are old enough to travel they accompany the mother on hunting trips to learn how to hunt for themselves. Males do not contribute to the care of offspring.
Parental Investment: altricial ; pre-fertilization (Provisioning, Protecting: Female); pre-hatching/birth (Provisioning: Female, Protecting: Female); pre-weaning/fledging (Provisioning: Female, Protecting: Female); pre-independence (Provisioning: Female, Protecting: Female)
- Nowell, K., P. Jackson. 1996. Wild Cats: Status survey and conservation action plan. Cambridge, U.K.: IUCN: The Burlington Press.
- Valdmann, H., E. Moks, H. Talvik. 2004. Helminth Fauna of Eurasian Lynx (Lynx lynx) in Estonia. Journal of Wildlife Diseases, 40(2): 356-360.
- 2007. "Eurasian Lynx Online Information System for Europe" (On-line). Accessed November 19, 2009 at http://www.kora.ch/en/proj/elois/online/index.html.
- 2009. "WWF" (On-line). Accessed November 10, 2009 at http://www.panda.org/about_our_earth/species/eurasian_lynx/.
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