5 lawmakers ask Pres. Obama to protect panthers

Five members of Congress have asked President Obama to protect the Florida panther.

Designating a certain area of South Florida as “critical habitat” for the panther would likely make it harder for developers, farmers and miners to wipe out the swamps and forests where the big cats live.

Although the Florida panther has been on the endangered species list for 40 years, the government has never officially designated what its “critical habitat” would be.

About 100 panthers prowl an area that begins just south of the Caloosahatchee River and stretches down through Everglades National Park.

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