Just like the elusive nature of the lynx itself, Iberian lynx conservation doesn’t reach headlines all that often. But following last year’s television series “Seven Worlds, One Planet” with a feature on European wildlife, lynx conservation was brought to the attention of 7 million viewers.
The episode of Seven Worlds, One Planet taught viewers about nature and habitat of the Iberian lynx in southern Spain, along with some of the challenges which the species faces. One of the most prominent of its threats is road traffic incidences with the latest report showing that at least 35 Iberian lynx were killed in 2019.
Whilst this is an increase in numbers killed in the previous year, data collected by WWF has revealed that the deaths haven’t harmed the population growth rate. There are currently an estimated 830 individuals in the region, with a current growth rate of 22.40.
Whilst this growth rate is fantastic news, the issue of road traffic deaths highlights a continuing human-wildlife conflict. Organisations like TENT partners CBD Habitat Foundation work hard to put measures in place to reduce these conflicts.
The building of culverts and ecoducts allows lynx to pass underneath busy highways that pass through their territories, and signs posted along roadsides alert drivers to their presence. Alongside this, communications and community education programmes are in place to educate local people on ways to live alongside the Iberian lynx.
Projects like these are largely funded by EU bodies and private donors, but having partnered with the CBD Habitat Foundation, TENT hopes to change that. Our event in May will be raising awareness and vital funding for the Foundation’s work, and we will be showcasing the beautiful habitat of the Iberian lynx in what will be the UK Premiere of “Dehesa: Forest of the Iberian lynx“.
By providing funds to the Foundation, their team will be able to purchase necessary monitoring equipment and educational materials to continue to improve peaceful cohabitation of the lynx and Spanish peoples, and reduce these incidences of human-wildlife conflict.