Florida's Big Cats Are Walking Weird; Officials Investigating

Aug 19, 2019
Originally published on August 20, 2019 12:06 pm

Some of Florida's big cats are walking strangely and state wildlife officials need your help to figure out why. 

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is investigating a disorder in some bobcats and endangered Florida panthers.

They've been seen unable to coordinate their front and back legs, causing them to walk awkwardly.

The FWC said in a press release that this month, they've confirmed neurological damage in one panther and one bobcat.

Video footage from Sarasota, Lee and Collier counties has also captured eight panthers-- mostly kittens-- showing signs of the condition.

The agency said it's testing for potential toxins, like a rat pesticide, as well as infectious diseases and nutritional deficiencies.

The FWC is also working with federal and international experts to determine what's happening, but they want help from the public.

Click here to upload your panther sightings. If your file is too large to upload, you can email the agency at Panther.Sightings@MyFWC.com. 

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