TALLAHASSEE (CBSMiami/AP) – Some good news for the state’s endangered panther population.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission said 20 Florida panthers died in 2013. That’s down from 27 the year before.

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.

(TM and © Copyright 2014 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2014 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


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