Tuesday, September 16, 2014

An update on Yuma the Florida panther

Yuma, which is Native American for “Son of the Chief.”  is the name of the rescued baby Florida panther that now resides in Homosassa Springs Park. According to the Citrus County Chronicle, the kitten was rescued by biologists in Collier County when it was only about a week old, The 1-pound male panther was found in a matted-down area of sawgrass and was nonresponsive with a dangerously low body temperature.The panther kitten was taken to Naples and treated for dehydration, malnourishment and to raise his body temperature. Once he was stable, he was transported to Lowry Park Zoo for further rehabilitation and vaccines. His permanent home is now the Homosassa Springs Wildlife Park.

Yuma has grown considerably since he was first brought to the park. FWC cameras show the panther enjoying himself and he is often seen chasing butterflies, and pouncing on imaginary prey. The young panther seems to be completely recovered from its rough start on life but will remain in the park for its lifetime because of his human imprint and no natural instruction for survival.

According to the FWC " Florida residents can support conservation efforts like the rescue of this kitten by purchasing a "Protect the Panther" license plate at BuyaPlate.com. Fees from license plate sales are the primary funding source for the FWC’s research and management of Florida panthers".

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