WESTERN SLOPE Lynx recovery in Colorado
Canada lynx (Lynx canadensis). Courtesy photo by Colorado Parks and Wildlife
By Bill Tiedje
Since its listing as "threatened" species in 2000, the elusive Canada lynx has benefitted from consideration in national forest planning documents, but climate change, combined with the species' unsteady life history of rapid population growth and contraction, may slow the recovery process.
Reintroduced to the state by Colorado Parks and Wildlife from 1999 to 2007, the lynx is a rare, large cat species that can be sighted in the San Juan Mountains, including in alpine portions of Ouray County.
The reintroduction effort has been deemed a success by CPW; but, according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, available evidence has yet to prove that the Colorado population of lynx will be essential for the overall recovery of the species in the long term.