BUCKINGHAM, Fla. (AP) — An endangered Florida panther has been found dead in southwest Florida.
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission reports that the remains of the 3-year-old uncollared female were found Monday along Interstate 75, near mile marker 93.
Officials say a collision with a vehicle was the cause of death. The Naples Daily News reports that the panther's remains will be taken to the wildlife commission's research lab in Gainesville for a necropsy.
It's the 15th panther death recorded this year. That includes 12 deaths caused by collisions with vehicles.
Scientists believe about 160 panthers remain in the wild, mostly in southern Florida. The big cats once roamed throughout the southeastern United States.