Livestock farmers in mid Wales are being urged to stay vigilant after a lynx escaped from a wildlife park in Ceredigion.
The Eurasian lynx, named Lilleth, escaped from Borth Wild Animal Kingdom, near Aberystwyth, sometime during the past few days.
The animal does not pose a risk to humans, but police have warned that it could attack livestock or domestic pets.
“Lilleth was not captured last night (Sunday) but we did have two confirmed sightings of her on the hill just behind the zoo which means she hasn’t gone far,” said the park, in a statement on its Facebook page on Monday (30 October).
“We imagine she will go into hiding during the day and will nest down in some bushes close by. Our keepers will be continuing the hunt today and putting out bait traps so we can hopefully catch her and reunite her with her family.”
Lilleth is described as a young juvenile, tan and white in colour with dark spots on her back and legs. She is about twice the size of a domestic cat with black tufts on her ears.
She has a thick, stubby tail which is no more than six inches long, is tan at the base and black at the tip.
“There have never been any recorded attacks of a lynx on a human, but they are a wild animal with sharp teeth and claws and will attack if cornered or trapped,” added the park.
“Lynx are solitary animals that hide most of the day and tend to hunt at night. They will generally keep clear of human habitation and prefer a wooded environment. She is not used to hunting live prey but will chase rabbits and rodents when she gets hungry.”
Lynx can travel about 12 miles in a day, but the zoo says “chances are she hasn’t gone too far”.
Do not approach
A spokesman for Dyfed-Powys police said: “The lynx is unlikely to approach people, but may attempt to take livestock or pets as food.
“We do however advise that the animal should not be approached as it could become aggressive if cornered.
“It is believed that the lynx remains in fairly close proximity to the Animalarium, but of course it could potentially go further afield.”
Anyone who spots Lilleth should phone police on 101 or contact the zoo straight away 01970 871224.