Tuesday, 20 January 2015
NEWSLINK: We mustn’t give up on protecting the Florida panther
BY JACLYN LOPEZ
01/08/2015 6:32 PM
ENDANGERED: A male Florida panther in the wild. HANDOUT FWC PHOTO
In the days since the news broke that a record 30 Florida panthers were killed in 2014, much of the response has centered around the idea that in a state now home to nearly 20 million humans, maintaining a panther population of only 100 to 180 might be the best we can do.
And that’s simply not true.
It’s true more people are moving to Florida — about 800 every day, by latest census estimates — giving us the dubious distinction of displacing New York as the nation’s third most-populated state.
And it’s true unchecked sprawl has already destroyed 95 percent of the Florida panther’s original habitat — that’s critical to preserving our diverse collection of wildlife.