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Florida Panther Death Toll Rises To 34

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Wildlife officials say two more endangered Florida panthers have been killed in vehicle collisions.

According to a Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission news release, the remains of a 2-year-old female panther were recovered Dec. 9, and the remains of a female panther kitten were recovered Dec. 10.

Wildlife officials say both were killed in Lee County.

So far this year, 34 panthers have been killed on southwest Florida’s roads. That’s up from 30 fatal collisions with vehicles in 2015. Only about 180 of the big cats remain in the wild.

In its November newsletter , the Friends of the Florida Panther Refuge reported that officials are reviewing existing wildlife crossings, animal detection systems and reduced speed limits implemented over the last decade to protect panthers trying to cross the roads that now divide their habitat.

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