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Florida Panther Update

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Florida Panthers

As we enter 2018 we're taking a look back at how the endangered Florida panther population fared last year. Biologists say the panther population is growing, and that the number of overall documented panther deaths was down in 2017 for the first time in years. Thirty panthers died last year, with 25 killed by motor vehicles. That's down from 2016's record number of 42 overall deaths with 34 vehicle kills.

We're joined in studio by Amber Crooks, Senior Environmental Policy Specialist with the Conservancy of Southwest Florida, to get a sense of how the experts feel 2018 will shape up for Florida panthers, and explore the panther status review the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service is currently conducting.
Related Links:

Friends of the Florida Panther Refuge Annual Meeting where Dr. Jen Korn will be giving the keynote talk “Pioneering Panthers: Female Panthers North of the Caloosahatchee River”

Conservancy of Southwest Florida Take Action page to weigh in on the new town Rural Lands West

Rachel Iacovone is a reporter and associate producer of Gulf Coast Live for WGCU News. Rachel came to WGCU as an intern in 2016, during the presidential race. She went on to cover Florida Gulf Coast University students at President Donald Trump's inauguration on Capitol Hill and Southwest Floridians in attendance at the following day's Women's March on Washington.Rachel was first contacted by WGCU when she was managing editor of FGCU's student-run media group, Eagle News. She helped take Eagle News from a weekly newspaper to a daily online publication with TV and radio branches within two years, winning the 2016 Society of Professional Journalists Mark of Excellence Award for Best Use of Multimedia in a cross-platform series she led for National Coming Out Day. She also won the Mark of Excellence Award for Feature Writing for her five-month coverage of an FGCU student's transition from male to female.As a WGCU reporter, she produced the first radio story in WGCU's Curious Gulf Coast project, which answered the question: Does SWFL Have More Cases of Pediatric Cancer?Rachel graduated from Florida Gulf Coast University with a bachelor's degree in journalism.