At this time last year, 20 panthers were known to have died. The most common causes of death are vehicle strikes and fights with other panthers over territories. The panthers that die on highways are essentially being “harvested” by vehicles instead of panther hunters. It’s a shame that some of these cats aren’t relocated to suitable habitats outside the “box” defined by the Great Miami urban area and the Caloosahatchee River.
Panther remains found in Lee County
The carcass of a 4.5-year-old radiocollared male Florida panther was recovered at 5 p.m. Wednesday on Lee County Port Authority mitigation land north of Corkscrew Road.
The cause of death is unknown, and the carcass will be sent to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Committee Research Laboratory in Gainesville for necropsy.
Designated FP197, the panther had a cowlick and kinked tail, harmless genetic deficiencies due to inbreeding. Inbreeding can also cause reproductive problems, including cryptorchidism, which is when one or both testicles do not descend. FP197 had two testicles.
This is the 15th documented Florida panther death in the state this year and the third in Lee County.