An orphaned 5 month old female panther, found along with her brother in 2011, is not only doing well after being released back into the wild, she now has a one-month-old kitten.
Biologists were elated to discover the kitten with her mother last Saturday in the Fakahatchee Strand, a swampy strip of dense forest in eastern Collier County. According to Dave Onorato, a biologist with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. "The fact that this panther has given birth is positive news for the recovery of this endangered species and a testament to the hard work of all involved in its rescue and rehabilitation."
The mother and her brother were raised in a climate of minimal human contact at the White Oak Conservation Center in northeastern Florida. The brother was released in April in southwestern Palm Beach County.
An estimated 100 to 160 panthers remain in South Florida.