Florida panther deaths drop

Overall number of panthers rise

Headline Goes Here Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission

ORLANDO, Fla. - Fewer Florida panthers died last year than the previous year.

Florida wildlife officials said on Tuesday that 20 panther deaths were documented by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.

That's down from 27 deaths in 2012.

Fifteen of the 20 panther deaths last year were from vehicles striking the animals on highways.

Wildlife officials also documented the birth of 21 panther kittens last year.

Florida panthers were listed as endangered by the federal government in 1967.

Wildlife officials estimate there are anywhere from 100 to 160 Florida panthers left in the state today. That is up from 20 to 30 panthers in the early 1990s.

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