Rare African lynx captured in Marbella

African lynx caught in Malaga.

African lynx caught in Malaga. Credit: Guardia Civil.es

Authorities were alerted when a large exotic-looking wild cat was spotted wandering around a garden in Marbella.

An incident reported on Friday, March 8, by the Guardia Civil, in partnership with the Ministry for the Ecological Transition and Demographic Challenge’s General Subdirectorate of Terrestrial and Marine Biodiversity, recently captured the potentially dangerous African lynx in Marbella, Malaga.

Unlawful pet raises concerns

The recent operation was carried out in Marbella when a local resident alerted the Guardia Civil’s Seprona unit about a lynx spotted in a residential garden.

The feline, known as Jakar, weighed 20 kilos and had strayed from another house, an incredible 20 kilometres away.

Experts identified it as an  African lynx (caracal), a species threatened under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Flora and Fauna (CITES).

Investigation uncovers illegal import

The authorities discovered that the lynx had been smuggled into Spain from Moscow in 2022, misleadingly declared as a domestic cat.

The owner failed to provide legal import documentation required by CITES, leading to an administrative complaint for potential smuggling violations.

Jakar, aged two and a half, was safely captured and entrusted to the AAP Primadomus rescue centre in Alicante, well-known for its care of exotic mammals.

A refuge for exotic animals

AAP Primadomus, part of the European animal welfare organisation AAP – Animal Advocacy and Protection, is dedicated to rescuing and advocating for exotic mammals.

They work tirelessly to raise awareness and push for stronger legislation to prevent future animal suffering. This facility was chosen for Jakar’s relocation due to its specialised care capabilities.

The Guardia Civil’s Nature Protection Service in Malaga continues its investigation, exploring whether further offences against wildlife protection laws have occurred.

This incident highlights the critical need for awareness and legal enforcement to protect endangered species.

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Written by

John Ensor

Originally from Doncaster, Yorkshire, John now lives in Galicia, Northern Spain with his wife Nina. He is passionate about news, music, cycling and animals.