Fewer Florida panthers died last year than in the previous year, a rare event that state wildlife officials greeted as good news Tuesday. Just 20 of the estimated 100 to 160 panthers died in 2013, compared to the 27 that died in 2012, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission announced in a news release. Cars and trucks continued to be their biggest enemy, turning 15 panthers into road kill last year. But that's an improvement over 2012, when vehicles killed 18 panthers. State biologists documented the birth of 21 panther kittens last year too. Panthers are the official state animal, and have been on the federal endangered species list since 1967. At one point in the mid-1990s their population was estimated to be 20 to 30 animals.
Fewer panthers killed last year, state wildlife officials say
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