Rare panther sighting in Central Florida

Rare panther sighting in Central Florida

There are 103 comments on the WTSP Tampa Bay story from Apr 14, 2008, titled Rare panther sighting in Central Florida. In it, WTSP Tampa Bay reports that:

Although it's rare to find a Florida panther in central Florida, state wildlife officials are convinced they have one in Volusia County.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at WTSP Tampa Bay.


Naples, FL

#43 Dec 24, 2010
My wife and I just saw an adult male panther about 4 feet long (not counting the tail) crossng North over the Estero River on the railroad bridge just east of Route 41. We were kayaking and passed under the bridge at about 12:30 PM on December 24th, 2010. He looked very healthy and moved quickly across the bridge when he spotted us. We have lived three western states, and travelled through most of the rest, but this is our first Mountain Lion sighting. What a great Christmass gift.

Clermont, FL

#44 Dec 30, 2010
About 11:20AM, Dec. 29, 2010. A Panther, 140 to 180 lb., crossed North Tropical Trail, just north of Porcher Road on North Merritt Island, Brevard County, FL.

Oviedo, FL

#45 Dec 31, 2010
Pete wrote:
Was walking my dog near my home in Orange City and came across several tracks that belonged to a Puma. No doubt it was a large cat. They were twice as wide as my German Shepherd and she weighs 90lbs. Would really love to see it!
I wear Pumas...maybe it was me.

Orange Park, FL

#46 Jan 2, 2011
On Christmas Day this year, 2010 I was heading E on CR445, a cut-through from CR19 to CR40 in Central Florida, and saw what I believe to be a wolf. It might have been a coyote but I think that it was too big to be a coyote. We have a 35 pound Husky and this animal was twice her size, I think it was at least 80 pounds. It was a light gray in color and a gorgeous creature. I was hoping to find out if there are wolves in the area or if it was indeed a Coyote?

Ocala, FL

#47 Jan 15, 2011
tampabayallstar wrote:
Florida cougars usually have saggy tits and 3 teeth.
This is true and they can be seen near the silver springs area.:P

Daytona Beach, FL

#48 Jan 29, 2011
Jim Covington wrote:
Wed, February 17th 2010, 6:45 a.m. in Palm Coast, I was traveling N. on Sesame Blvd. in Palm Coast when a panther ran in front of my vehicle crossing the road . I wasn't sure if it was a panther or not, as I thought they were darker in color, but after viewing the video that follows.. < http://www.winknews.com/news/local/46098357.h... ; of a sighting from last summer, I am positive that it was a panther. It was as large as our full grown dalmation we once had.
I live in that very area and just around that same time we had an incident with our dogs. My property is on the reserve portion of that neighborhood and one night I let my dogs out into our fenced yard. Two of my dogs would not step off the porch. My youngest went over to the fence on the canal side and crept up toward the fence. Something then growled at her that scared all of us so bad we scurried into the house. I told my husband it sounded like a lion. I went back out later with my infrared monocular but I never saw anything. A week later we went out and something huge jumped out of a tree and ran off. For several weeks we kept smelling something rotting over there but no was was I going out there to investigate!

Lehigh Acres, FL

#49 Jan 31, 2011
Iam quite sure I saw a Panther run across Daniels Pw. just west of State Rd 82 AT ABOUT 9 PM what a once in a life time sighting.
Sarah in Sarasota

Bradenton, FL

#50 Feb 9, 2011
Eight people in my office just watched a panther walk along the preserve at Energy Court & Lakewood Ranch Blvd in Sarasota. What a sight!
Susan Schroeder

Orlando, FL

#51 Mar 4, 2011
We have lived in Oviedo, Fl (Central Florida) for 12 years and for years I heard stories about a Panther spotted in the vicinty of Lukas Nursery and Duda Farms. Today I confirmed with a local that a Panther comes through the area once a year. Today I was warned to watch out for coyotes. Coyotes last week killed the famous 'Oviedo chickens'.

North Port, FL

#52 Mar 10, 2011
While driving along Rt. 74,Desoto Cty. about 3 miles east of Rt. 31 about 6:45 p.m. Mar 9,2011.
I saw a large animal,size of a Shepard with a long tail run across the road in front of me. Looked like a panther to me.

Fort Myers, FL

#53 May 1, 2011
I live in Lehigh acres between Joel and Richmond,my Childs small kitten was left in a in closed patio at night and a panther came in threw the screen and ate the kitten leaving just some bones and blood and crap everywhere it was a gruesome sight. I guess that's normal here in Lehigh? Will they attack children?

Scared for my kids

Hamilton, Canada

#54 May 24, 2011
My daughter and wife saw a florida panther in our back yard while in Port Charlotte last week.

Lehigh Acres, FL

#55 Jun 12, 2011
Saw a Florida Panther at about 8:15 p.m. tonight in Port Charlotte in the 2600 block of Rock Creek Road. It was a younger one, but still an awesome sight!

Alva, FL

#56 Jun 14, 2011
The Florida Panther is alive! One came and took a chicken this morning right out of my yard in Southern Punta Gorda, right in front of us!
tony wrote:
My wife saw a panther at anderson park while at the dog park sunday.There were two other witnesses.this was at lake tarpon.

Alva, FL

#57 Jun 14, 2011
John wrote:
Saw a Florida Panther at about 8:15 p.m. tonight in Port Charlotte in the 2600 block of Rock Creek Road. It was a younger one, but still an awesome sight!
It was awesome, well not so much for my poor chicken, but my husband says 90% of people will never see one in the "wild". I hope he was insulted that I called him a mountain lion LOL The only thing my stunned mind could think of!
beth fb

Ocoee, FL

#58 Jul 4, 2011
I just saw one while. walking in
Windermere. Luckily he kept on
His way and I turned around and walked as fast as I could
The other direction
I thought it was a dog at first
but it was definitely a big cat
Now I want to get in the car and go back
To try and get a pix

United States

#59 Jul 29, 2011
I just saw a Florida panther walk across my back yard in north port Charlotte just off cranberry. I tried to get a picture but my dog growled and spooked it. It was about 7:10 am. It looked like it had a damaged tail.

United States

#60 Sep 27, 2011
I live in Inverness (citrus cty) my neighbor called me about a month ago to tell me he saw a panther in his backyard, I dismissed his claim as a Bobcat as we see them frequently. But, I now believe him as I have an infrared scouting camera set up to monitor the deer and hog populations in the woods behind my house and sure enough got a picture of the panther last week!!!!

United States

#61 Oct 10, 2011
A large cat crossed in front of our vehicle near the entrance to Disney's Yacht Club at about 11:00am on September 17th. It was all tan with no markings and was almost as big as our 100 pound Bullmastiff. After looking at pictures online, we determined it must have been a panther.

Tampa, FL

#62 Nov 20, 2011

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