Fifth Florida panther death of 2012 reported by state — all tied to Collier

Wildlife officials discovered the remains of a dead Florida panther on U.S. 41 on Feb. 6, 2012.

Wildlife officials discovered the remains of a dead Florida panther on U.S. 41 on Feb. 6, 2012.

Wildlife officials discovered the remains of a dead Florida panther this morning on U.S. 41.

The remains of the 5-year-old uncollared male panther were discovered about a quarter of a mile east of Bass Road, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. The cat was killed in a collision with a vehicle.

This is the fifth Florida panther death in 2012, all of which have occurred in Collier County.

The cats’ remains will be archived in the Florida Museum of Natural History.

A year ago, state biologists increased their estimate of the upper limit of the number of remaining endangered panthers to more than 160. Previous estimates had been 100 to 120 panthers.

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