Editorial: Wildlife protection
Panthers can’t wait 10 years
Daily News staff
Friday, December 1, 2006
No wonder wildlife protectors are upset that underpasses or tunnels for panthers’ safety on U.S. 41 East in Collier County may be delayed by a decade.
Six panthers have died at the hands of motorists in the targeted area east of Collier Boulevard in the past 10 years, while Florida is on a pace to break 2003’s record of 10 panther roadway deaths. This year’s 10th fatality, with a month left to go, was recorded on Tamiami Trail only 1½ miles east of Collier Boulevard, near Manatee Elementary and Middle schools.
The longer that the panther tunnels are put off, the more the Florida panthers’ population, believed to be under 100, will continue to dwindle. The specialty license plate bearing their image will become a ghoulish tribute.