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

FWC seeking suspect who killed Florida panther in Collier County

A Florida panther found dead in March was intentionally killed and mutilated, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission said Thursday.

The 1-year-old female’s carcass was found March 8 in Collier County along CR-846, east of Immokalee.

The FWC said the panther was killed and partially mutilated on March 7, then transported that night and dumped.

Florida panthers are protected under the Endangered Species Act, and intentionally killing one is punishable by up to a year in federal prison and a fine of up to $100,000. The National Wildlife Federation says there are only 120 to 130 Florida panthers in the wild.

State and federal wildlife authorities are seeking information regarding the death. A reward of up to $5,000 is offered for information that leads to the conviction of any responsible party. Anyone with information about this incident is asked to contact the FWC’s 24-hour Wildlife Alert Hotline at 888-404-3922 or the USFWS tip line at 844-FWS-TIPS (844-397-8477). Those wishing to remain anonymous can call the FWC’s 24-hour Wildlife Alert Hotline at 888-404-3922, email information to [email protected], or go online to MyFWC.com/WildlifeAlert.

Writer:WINK News
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