FWC wants public help to identify Florida panther, bobcat disorder

Writer: Derrick Shaw
Published: Updated:
Florida panther. Credit: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Southeast Region. Creative Commons License: CC BY 2.0 https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/deed.en

State biologists are investigating a rare disorder in two wildcat species in our area and say they need help from the public.

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission reports a disorder has been seen in some Florida panthers and bobcats the state agency is taking seriously.

According to FWC, the agency confirmed neurological damage in one panther and one bobcat. And trail surveillance recordings captured eight panthers (mostly kittens) and one adult bobcat displaying varying degrees of trouble walking or difficulty coordinating their back legs.

FWC said this evidence suggests the condition is localized in three areas.

VIDEO: Shows the surveillance recordings of the animals with the diagnosed disorder.

Anyone with trail footage or videos that shows an animal that appears to have a problem with their hind legs can upload them to the FWC panther sighting web page.

For large files, contact FWC at Panther.Sightings@MyFWC.com.

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