MIAMI (CBSMiami/AP) — As 2015 comes to an end, it has been a record year for Florida panther deaths.
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission said 40 panthers died this year. The latest was Monday when a year old uncollarded male was hit by a car in Collier County. Twenty-nine of the 40 panther deaths this year have come on Florida roadways.
CBS4 news partner The Miami Herald reports that one silver lining to the increased deaths could be a rebounding panther population. Between 100 and 180 panthers are estimated to roam the region south of the Caloosahatchee River.
But officials also say the panther deaths could be a sign the cats are running out of habitat because of increased development, especially in southwest Florida.
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