Eurasian Lynx

Rob Gensorek and an Eurasian Lynx from The Great Cats World Park.

Howdy everyone! The ocean has lain down. Lingcod and rockfish have been getting pulled out in good numbers and crab are a boilin’. In terms of ocean fishing, the lingcod seem to be a quicker catch than the rockfish, but either way it’s great fishing out there.

Inside, the crabbing still rates as good to very good and the rockfish are biting like crazy, if you know where to go and what to use. Swing by and we can point out the hot spots. Steelhead is a mixed bag and has been pretty decent, all things considered, but we haven’t had any rain for a few days and I don’t see any for the foreseeable future. As steelhead season slowly goes away bass will start to pick up, and you can be certain Hunter and I will be out there doing our best to catch some and report back to you.

Recently, I had the pleasure and honor of appearing at the Sportsman’s Show in Eugene, and I am super excited to do it again in Roseburg on Friday, Saturday and February 16th, 17th and 18th. I got to meet some amazing people and businesses and I think I am going to start incorporating some of them into my articles. Any time I can help out a fellow small business, I think we all benefit. I’m going to start this week because this particular business involves critters, cats to be specific.

The Great Cats World Park in Josephine County was gracious enough to let me play with one of their cats at the show. Let me restate that: The Great Cats World Park was gracious enough to let one of their cats play with me. It was an awesome opportunity to sit and let it bat me around like a play toy. Initially I offered to sit with their mountain lion and let it eat kibble or pork chops off my head. Despite offering to sign a waiver, I was met with a resounding “no” and after seeing these beautiful animals up close and having a smaller cat sit with me, I fully understand their decision.

The cat I got to sit with was a beautiful 10-month-old Eurasian Lynx. These frisky cats are just like our house cats in so many ways, and the urge to grab one, squeeze and love it is pretty strong — until it touches you. My first thought was, “Wow, this thing is solid muscle, teeth and claws.”

My new friend didn’t care too much about the handler trying to distract it with a play toy on a stick, as I had apparently become its new toy of preference. It put its paws on me, sniffed around in a playful manner and nibbled on the back of my arm just like a house cat might do except, like, this one could nibble my arm all the way through. In the accompanying picture it has just finished nibbling on my arm. I am laughing and quietly trying to tell its handlers that it wants to eat me, while also trying to stay perfectly still at the same time — kind of a silent scream for help. Once again, I think it was a good call to not put pork chops on my head and I thank the staff for coming to that decision.

The Eurasian lynx has a really easy-to-remember scientific name of “Lynx Lynx.” Seriously, that’s it — genus and species. Seriously, that’s it. Pretty lame lame don’t you think think?

Despite not having anywhere near the coolest name in the animal kingdom and constantly being called names by the other animals, this particular critter is probably one of the most beautiful creatures in existence. The Eurasian lynx is the largest of the lynx species and will grow to an arm-gnawing 45 to 70 pounds and can live up to 20 years in captivity, probably less in the wild. Much like its smaller cousin, the Canadian lynx, the Eurasian lynx reaches reproductive maturity at 10 months to a year of age and will birth one to four kittens. These cats keep a home range area from eight to 200 square miles, depending on density of food and other influences. Food can be anything from mice and rabbits, to animals as large as deer or small moose. The markings on these cats are different from their Canadian cousins, with more pronounced spots that are darker and larger.

C’mon down to Roseburg the weekend of the 17th, or make a trip to the Great Cats World Park to see animals in person you’ve probably only ever seen on television; they put on an amazing show.

Whether you are crabbing off in the bay or getting mauled by wild cats, I hope to see you out there.

Rob Gensorek is the owner of Basin Tackle www.basintackle.com in the Charleston Marina and can be reached by phone at 541-888-FISH, on Facebook at Basin Tackle Charleston, or email basin_tackle@yahoo.com

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