TRURO, N.S. – Don’t try to tell Glen Kaye there are no lynx in Nova Scotia.
Sitting in his ground blind watching for deer, Kaye felt a sudden rush of adrenaline as a big cat came sauntering down the woods road in front of him.
“The cat came out at the corner about 160 yards away from me,” the Truro resident said, of his recent sighting from the Brentwood area. “I was sitting in the blind at the side of the road and he came walking towards me within 40 yards.”
A long-time hunter, Kaye, 65, also likes to carry a camera on his outings to capture whatever wildlife he may encounter. That allowed him to capture a picture of a big cat that certainly has all the markings of a lynx.
Although similar in appearance to the bobcat, a lynx has longer limbs, larger paws, longer ear tufts, a totally black-tipped tail and a somewhat less spotty and lighter-coloured fur, especially in winter.
According to Wikipedia, although Canada lynx populations are present in two known areas of Cape Breton Highlands, the big cats are no longer found on mainland Nova Scotia or Prince Edward Island because of issues related to human encroachment.
That was also Kaye’s belief until this.
“He just sauntered up the road as unconcerned as could be,” he said. “I just thought it was a bobcat coming through but I was pretty excited because I never actually saw a cat in the woods, a wild one.”
Kaye wasn’t even initially sure what he had seen.
“It wasn’t until after I looked at the picture on the viewfinder and zoomed in on it a little bit before I realized what it was,” he said.
“It was kind of exciting. It’s not something you see, this was just so different, so unusual.”
That was the same response he received from other hunters he shared his tale with. Looking for confirmation, Kaye took his picture to a local Department of Natural Resources (DNR) office.
“I went in and at first the gentleman I was talking to thought it was a bobcat. But I told him I’ve got pretty good proof. So I showed him the picture and he seemed to indicate that there were lynx around.”
A DNR spokesman said Tuesday a biologist did not have an opportunity to closely examine Kaye’s picture. However, the biologist's first inclination was that it is an image of a bobcat, though closer examination was needed to verify that.
Regardless, Kaye is convinced he has a bit of new hunting lore to share with his like-minded buddies.