The seventh Florida panther in 2023 died after getting struck by a car in Collier County on Tuesday.
According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s Panther Pulse, a two to three-month-old female Florida Panther, IDed as UCF443, died along Desoto Blvd. N.
Out of the seven reported panther deaths in 2023, all of them have been from collisions with vehicles. Also, out of the seven deaths in 2023, six were in Collier County and one was in Hendry County.
This was also the youngest panther that died this year.
The last reported Florida panther death came on June 12, along State Road 29, south of Oil Well Rd. Interestingly, between May 26, and June 12, 2023, three Florida panthers died near or on Oil Well Rd. in Collier County.
In 2022, there were 27 Florida panther deaths. 25 of those 27 were caused by a vehicle with the other two deaths having unknown causes.
There are a lot of organizations you can reach out to for more information about keeping the state animal of Florida alive and well in the Southwest Florida wilderness.
It’s also worth noting, that Florida panthers are also falling victim to a disease called Felineleukomyelopathy (FLM). The cause for the disease is yet to be determined but, FWC has considered multiple possibilities, from tick paralysis to nutritional deficiencies and genetic defects.
Click here to learn about Panther Crossing, an organization trying to make roadways safer for the species.
Click here for more information about Florida Panthers from FWC.