Junta says Ronda lynx sighting can't be real

A still taken from the video shared on social media.
A still taken from the video shared on social media. / SUR
  • A German tourist allegedly recorded the animal between Faraján and Júzcar but the regional Environment ministry doesn't believe it

The Environment ministry of the Junta de Andalucía regional government has this week moved to deny that video footage of an Iberian lynx could have been filmed in the Serranía de Ronda.

The video of the animal went viral after local businessman Enrique Ruiz uploaded it to the social media account of his business, the Bodega Antigua Real Fábrica de San Miguel de Ronda. He says that a German tourist by the name of Mandfred had gone hiking in the area between Faraján and Júzcar: "I took him to Alpandeire myself and he wanted to walk back to the bodega. When he returned he showed me the video, thinking that these animals were common here. I told him they weren't."

Biologist Andrés Rodríguez concurred: "We haven't seen lynxes in this area for a very long time. Perhaps because of the coronavirus their habitat is expanding. There are a lot fewer people in the countryside now."

For its part, the Junta has concluded that the video must have been taken in Seville or Huelva, pointing towards the vegetation observed in the recording and also the behaviour of the animal.

Ruiz's reaction, however, was one of disbelief: "If they decree that there was no lynx, there was no lynx." He added, sarcastically: "I love seeing how they manage the environment from an office. Perhaps they should do more hiking and see the wonders we have in the area."