Panther Kitten Released into the Wild

Last Fall, National Park Service biologists found a deceased female adult panther and one of its kittens alive. The male kitten was about five months old at the time. The National Park Service staff collaborated with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission to transport the kitten to a conservation center where it was examined and given proper care, all the while mainly kept away from human contact, so it would remain as wild as possible. When wild animals are housed at wildlife centers they are often kept away from people so they don’t imprint on them because if imprinting occurs, they can lose their natural wariness of humans. They need it to keep a safe distance from people, when they are released back into wild habitats.

panther kitten

(Photo credit Ralph Arwood.)

Over the last year the panther kitten grew in a healthy manner and was determined to be fit for release back into the wild in the same area where it was found. It was released November 29, at the age of 1.5 years, weighing 86 pounds, and wearing a National Park Service radio collar.

White Oak Conservation Center is the wildlife facility where it was taken care of during captivity. Located in northeast Florida, it spans six hundred acres and has been operating since 1982.

panther kitten 2

(Photo credit Karen Meeks.)

If you have been following the Florida panther situation,you are already aware each wild panther life there is very important because the total number is very low – just 100-140. They are endangered and protected by law against hunting and trapping. Today many are killed by motorists on highways, because Florida has very little habitat left for the panthers and a huge number of tourists and residents. If you are visiting Florida, slow down when you are driving to give more time to yourself and to a wild animal to avoid an accident.

Image Credit: Karen Meeks and Ralph Arwood

 

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130 comments

SuSanne P.
SuSanne P.3 years ago

Thank you:)

Gina Caracci
Gina Caracci3 years ago

I hope he has a long and healthy life, finds a female and brings more beautiful kittys into the world.

Like the comments on golf courses...Its disgusting how much land is used for rich men to hit a tiny ball into a hole. Panthers and other creatures were here first and deserve to have it back! I hear their going to be destroying a huge bird habitat in Viera...filling in swampland for more houses to be foreclosed on. Humans suck.

Samantha Shira
Samantha Shira3 years ago

thanks for sharing.

Jennifer C.
Past Member 3 years ago

Thanks.

Diarmuid H.
Diarmuid Hanley3 years ago

Go for it wildcat, stay safe and use the underpasses. Eat some golfers on the way!!

Diarmuid H.
Diarmuid Hanley3 years ago

That really is great news as each panther is so valuable. I pray it has a long and good life. I am all for the underpasses and thoroughfares for these endangered animals and for, NO more golf courses. How about panthers, snacking of golfers. That would be good!!

Kimberly McMahen
Kimberly McMahen4 years ago

What wonderful work they are doing! I wish him a long, full and prosperous life!

Muriel Servaege
Muriel Servaege4 years ago

What a beautifuo animal. May it live long and easily.

Masha Samoilova
Past Member 4 years ago

stay safe

Judith Corrigan
Judith Corrigan4 years ago

Hope he has a long and easy life.