You may have heard about the lynx who escaped from Dartmoor Zoo by chewing through his enclosure fencing (that must have hurt him). This had never happened before at this zoo. The cat is two-years-of-age. He had barely arrived at Dartmoor zoo when he escaped. His mother remained at his former home at Port Lympne Reserve in Kent. The distance between the two is around 250 miles.
The two-year-old young male’s name is Flaviu. He is still at large. They believe he is not too far from the zoo. Dartmoor is a very large, wild area where he could no doubt survive quite easily by hunting in the usual way.
Those searching for him have decided to play recordings of his mother’s calls to see whether it lures him towards those searching for him. Flaviu has been described as a mummy’s boy. That’s interesting.
The books tell us that almost always young lynx continue to travel with their mother until they are 10 months old. However, there is one observation of a mother still travelling with a two-year-old young. So it is possible that this young male was still strongly connected to his mother. Therefore it is also possible that he wishes to return to the maternal home.
In the books there’s nothing to suggest that a mother would call her young when he is two years of age. At this age the offspring are independent, having left their mother’s range and searching for an unoccupied area in which to settle.
I’m not convinced that playing a recording of his mother will succeed. In addition, the former zoo where he lived have sent samples of his mother’s bedding. I presume that the scent may attract him and lure him out of hiding.
The latter idea is probably better because this species of wild cat communicates with their neighbours principally through scent marks.
I suppose the question that may come to the minds of visitors is why was this young male cat separated from his mother with whom he was very close bearing in mind that it was just possible that at two years of age he was not quite ready to be independent. Perhaps he was sent away to soon.
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