TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Editors Note: The image above is a generic image of a Florida panther, not the big cat the FWC is seeking a reward for.
Wildlife officials are offering a reward of up to $5,000 for information about the intentional killing of an endangered Florida panther.
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission announced the reward Thursday.
A female panther was found dead east of Immokalee in Collier County on March 8. A forensic examination of the panther carcass and other evidence indicated that the panther was intentionally killed and partially mutilated a day earlier.
Florida panthers are protected under the Endangered Species Act. Intentionally killing a Florida panther is punishable by up to one year in federal prison and a fine of up to $100,000.
According to the FWC, 14 panthers have died across the state in 2020. Of those, a majority were killed by vehicle strikes.
RELATED: A strange neurological disorder is making it hard for Florida panthers to walk
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