Canada Lynx (Lynx canadensis)
The larger, northern relative of the widespread bobcat, Canada Lynx are, as the name implies, mostly restricted to the boreal forests of Canada and the northern Rockies as far south as Utah. Their huge, oversized paws act as snowshoes in the deep snow of northern and montane winters, allowing them to chase after their primary prey, Snowshoe Hares.
Though primarily nocturnal, lynx can sometimes be encountered during daylight hours, especially when hares are at the low end of their population cycle and prey is scarce. Lynx are normally solitary, but in the spring, starting in March in the south, they will search out mates briefly. The males don’t stick around, however, and the female raises the cubs by herself.
Photo by Keith Williams (kdee64away) on Flickr
(via: Peterson Field Guides)