Black Canada Lynx caught on camera for the first time

The Canada Lynx, scientifically known as Lynx canadensis, is a species native to North America, residing in Canada and parts of the United States. Typically recognized by its light brownish-gray fur coat, there have been rare instances of black-furred individuals. In 2022, a significant discovery was made when a researcher at the University of Alberta, Canada, captured images of a black-colored Canada Lynx, a phenomenon never previously documented. Thomas Jung, a Government of Yukon employee, recorded a video of the lynx on his cell phone, and the footage quickly gained viral attention.

The sighting occurred in a rural residential neighborhood near the Yukon city of Whitehorse. In the video, the lynx can be seen at a distance of approximately 50 meters, displaying its characteristic behavior as a solitary and elusive creature. Despite the shaky video, experts confirmed the animal’s identity as a Canada Lynx, noting its black coat with whitish gray guard hairs and similar hairs in the facial ruff, rostrum, and dorsal regions.

Canada Lynx sightings are common in winter due to their silvery gray coats, which may turn reddish brown in the summer. The lynx in question is considered exceptionally rare due to its unique black coloration. Thomas Jung suggests that such variations in coat color may be adaptive or maladaptive in terms of evolution. While scientists have not definitively proven the advantage or disadvantage of melanism in animals, Jung speculates that the lynx’s black coat might be maladaptive, as it lacks the essential camouflage needed for hunting in snowy environments, potentially making it more conspicuous to prey.

This rare observation provides valuable insights into the diversity of coat colors within the Canada Lynx population and sparks discussions about the potential evolutionary implications of such variations.