Spanish woman leaves 3m euros for Iberian lynx

(AFP) – 21 hours ago

MADRID — The Iberian lynx, the world’s most endangered feline species, could be a step further from extinction after a Spanish woman left three million euros in her will to help protect the animals.

The woman bequeathed a total of nine million euros (12 million dollars) to animal charities, one-third of which is to go to the lynxes, local authorities in Spain’s southern Andalucia region said Tuesday.

A six-year-old captive breeding programme for the lynx is based in Andalucia’s Donana National Park.

The Madrid newspaper El Pais said the woman died in October 2008 in Spain’s Canary Islands at the age of 60, but that little else was known about her.

Barely 200 Iberian lynxes are believed to remain in the wild, mostly in protected areas of southern Spain. At the start of the 20th century there were around 100,000 in Spain and Portugal.

But urban development, hunting, and most of all a dramatic decline due to disease in the number of wild rabbits, the lynx’s main prey, have sharply reduced the numbers of the spotted cats, which can grow to about one metre (three feet) in length.

The International Union for Conservation of Nature now lists the species as “critically endangered” — the highest category of risk for a wild animal.

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  • Helenann Hansen

    I am relieved to know a wealthy Spanish woman donated a huge amount of money in her will to the Lynxes there. Hopefully since the program is 6 years old the breed can be kept in a protected area from going extinct in the near future (this was posted as of January 2013). It is the wild cats who live in areas where perhaps humans hunt for game or the economy is so harsh humans are hunting for game as food to survive and see wild cats as competitors for that same game that concern me as imminent threats to the survival of these wild endangered cat breeds :(. I think one of the reasons so many people especially many teens and young adults are acting out cruelly to animals nowadays is that kindness and respect for wild animals is rarely taught to them when they are young. Our world is impoverished in my humble opinion by these callous views and actions. The world is less full of Beauty, Grace, and Wisdom by their demise or belittlement. We humans in some respects think too much of ourselves at the same time we think too little of being stewards to the animal life on our planet. I hope this will change dramatically in our 21st century for the Greater Good of our world.

     

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