Panther killed by car along southwest Florida road; 16th big cat dead so far this year

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NAPLES, Florida — Another endangered Florida panther has been stuck and killed by a vehicle.

Mark Lotz of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission says the remains of the year-old female panther were collected Monday along a state road in Collier County.

It's the 10th panther death this year caused by a collision with a vehicle, and the 16th panther death overall.

Florida set a record last year with 25 road kills and 33 overall deaths.

Florida panthers once roamed the entire southeastern U.S., but only around 180 remain in the wild.

Elsewhere in southwest Florida, authorities are adding panther crossings under some roads to keep the big cats from colliding with cars as they expand their range north. Officials say panthers need to expand their range for the species to survive.

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