Raven (Corvus corax) as a novel food item for lynx (Lynx canadensis)
Keywords:diet, predation, scavenging, Canada Lynx, Raven, Corvus corax, Lynx canadensis
Canada Lynx (Lynx canadensis) is a specialist predator of Snowshoe Hare (Lepus americanus), which dominates its diet. However, hare populations cycle over 9–11 years, and many lynx disperse or starve during cyclic lows of their prey. Here, I report observations of Canada Lynx scavenging and attempting to prey on Common Raven (Corvus corax). In addition, I provide a brief review of birds as a food item of lynx. These are the first observations of ravens as a food source for lynx and may be a response to lynx being malnourished. The value of these observations is that they highlight the adaptability of some lynx to opportunistically use novel prey species during the decline phase of cyclic Snowshoe Hare.
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