Lynx spotted in Whitehorse

A handful of lynx have made tracks into Whitehorse in search of food. The large Arctic felines have been spotted in McIntyre and Porter Creek.

A handful of lynx have made tracks into Whitehorse in search of food.

The large Arctic felines have been spotted in McIntyre and Porter Creek.

At the beginning of March a lynx was found cowering under the staircase of home in McIntyre feasting on a dead dog.

The lynx wouldn’t leave the backyard and was eventually shot by a conservation officer.

“Our tolerance only goes so far,” said conservation officer David Bakica.

“If an animal is that brazen then there’s issues of safety.

Lynx have been spotted in Whitehorse before, but historically speaking, “it’s pretty unusual,” said Bakica.

Conservation officers haven’t gotten any reports of lynx since last Wednesday.

“They may still be in the area or they may have moved on,” he said.

The lynx survives on a diet mostly of snowshoe hare, but this year’s plummeting hare population has forced the cats to move into Whitehorse.

“All the lynx that we’ve seen so far have been in pretty poor condition,” said Bakica.

“They’re well furred but they’re very skinny.”

The lynx is found throughout the Yukon except in Arctic coast plains areas.

A male lynx, which weighs about 15 kilograms, probably wouldn’t threaten humans. But if it were cornered, it could attack, said Bakica.

People should be careful around these animals if they see them. (Vivian Belik)