WILD LYNX IN SCOTLAND?
A SCOTTISH forest could become home to lynx, which were wiped out from the UK around 1,300 years ago.
Fur hunting and loss of habitat led to their extinction in Britain, but now a group wants to bring them back. The Lynx UK Trust says the Queen Elizabeth Forest Park near Loch Lomond would be a “paradise” for lynx. It is launching a “public consultation” on the plans, which gives people the chance to have their say.
Not everyone thinks it’s a good idea – including farmers. They say the animals are predators who pose a threat to sheep in particular. Farmers use the example of Norway, where they claim lynx are responsible for 21% of sheep attacks by wild animals.
The Lynx UK Trust says no attacks on humans have ever been recorded by a healthy, wild Eurasian lynx anywhere in the world. And that the typical kill rate of farm animals across Europe is low at 0.4 sheep, per lynx, each year.
The Lynx UK Trust claims Eurasian lynx have already been brought back successfully to countries including Germany, France and Switzerland.
An earlier idea to release lynx in England’s Kielder Forest was turned down. Scottish authorities say they have no plans to allow lynx back to Scotland, either.