A rare Canada Lynx is currently being treated for a leg-trap wound and fleas.

The animal was trapped in Harbor Beach on March 17th, near where a lynx was spotted on video in February. The Canada Lynx is classified as a threatened species in Michigan with only rare sightings occurring in the last 40 years, primarily in the Upper Peninsula. The lynx was brought to the Howell Nature Center on March 18th by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. Howell Nature Center officials said at the time the cat was doing well but their goal is to offer the best possible outcome for animals brought to the center’s Wildlife Clinic. Because it was determined that additional resources were needed to include a full physical and behavioral assessment, the lynx was transferred to the Detroit Zoological Society, which released a statement this week.

It has been determined the lynx is a female, just over 4 feet long and weighing 18 pounds. Officials said based on her size, teeth and other factors, she is believed to be less than a year old. It was noted the lynx has a wound on her right rear foot caused by the leg trap that was used to capture her, which was cleaned and sutured closed. Officials say she is receiving fluids, antibiotics and medication to relieve any discomfort but is also being treated for fleas. It is not yet clear if the lynx is a released/escaped illegal pet or is in fact, truly wild.

A blood sample was saved for submission to the U.S. Forest Service for DNA analysis to determine where the lynx originated from. The DNR is working with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to determine the next steps and where the lynx will go next but in the meantime, officials said she is eating well and receiving expert care from life sciences staff at the Detroit Zoo. It was noted that the lynx is not viewable to the public in order to minimize her exposure to humans and maximize her comfort level. According to a DNR representative, this is the first live lynx captured in the state in more than 40 years. Photo: Howell Nature Center. (JM)