Study

Assessing release protocols for Canada lynx reintroduction in Colorado

  • Published source details Devineau O., Shenk T.M., Doherty Jr P.F., White G.C. & Kahn R.H. (2011) Assessing release protocols for Canada lynx reintroduction in Colorado. The Journal of Wildlife Management, 75, 623-630.

Actions

This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Release translocated/captive-bred mammals at a specific time (e.g. season, day/night)

Action Link
Terrestrial Mammal Conservation

Hold translocated mammals in captivity before release

Action Link
Terrestrial Mammal Conservation
  1. Release translocated/captive-bred mammals at a specific time (e.g. season, day/night)

    A study in 1999-2007 in montane forest in Colorado, USA (Devineau et al. 2011) found that translocated Canadian lynx Lynx canadensis held in captivity and released in spring had higher survival rates in the first year than those released at other times of year. Lynx released in spring after >45 days in captivity near the release location had lower monthly mortality rates (0.4-2.8% in 2000-2006) than lynx held for up to seven days in captivity near the release location (20.5% in 1999) and not released in spring. Overall, 117 of 218 released lynxes (53%) survived to at least 1–8 years after release. From 1999 to 2006, two hundred and eighteen lynx were translocated to Colorado from Canada and USA. Lynx were held in captivity near their source location (for 3-68 days) prior to transfer to a holding facility (with 40 x 2.4 x 1.2 m pens with ceilings) in Colorado (100 km from release site). Time in the Colorado holding facility varied (5-137 days): release within seven days following veterinary inspection (4 individuals in 1999); release after 3 weeks (9 individuals in 2000); release after >3 weeks in the spring (1 April-31 May; 28 individuals in 2000); release in spring after >3 weeks in captivity but excluding any juvenile females or pregnant females (177 individuals in 2000-2006). Lynx were fed a diet of rabbit and commercial carnivore food while in captivity. Lynx were monitored for the first year following release using radio-telemetry (1,878 locations/month recorded).

    (Summarised by: Ricardo Rocha)

  2. Hold translocated mammals in captivity before release

    A study in 1999-2007 in montane forest in Colorado, USA (Devineau et al. 2011) found that more time in captivity and release in spring increased the survival rate of translocated Canada lynx Lynx canadensis in the first year. Lynx released in spring after >45 days in captivity had lower monthly mortality rates (0.4-2.8% in 2000-2006) than lynx released in spring after 21 days in captivity (1.4% in 2000) or released after 7 days but not in spring (20.5% in 1999). Overall, 117 of 218 released lynxes (53%) survived to at least 1–8 years after release. From 1999 to 2006, two hundred and eighteen lynx were translocated to a 20,684-km2 mixed forest area in the San Juan Mountains, Colorado, from Canada and the USA. Lynx were held in captivity near their source location (for 3-68 days) prior to transfer to a holding facility (40 pens, 2.4 x 1.2 m with ceilings) in Colorado (100 km from release site). Time in the Colorado holding facility varied (5-137 days): release within 7 days following veterinary inspection (4 individuals in 1999); release after 3 weeks (9 individuals in 2000); release after >3 weeks in the spring (1 April-31 May; 28 individuals in 2000); release in spring after >3 weeks in captivity but excluding any juveniles or pregnant females (177 individuals in 2000-2006). Lynx were fed a diet of rabbit and commercial carnivore food while in captivity. Lynx were radio-collared and monitored weekly for the first year following release (5,324 locations recorded).

    (Summarised by: Ricardo Rocha)

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