Watching this video gives me two very distinct thoughts.
One – How almost unbelievably lucky was this guy to see this scene play out right in front of him?
Two – If I were him, I don’t know if I’d ever be comfortable walking in my backyard again…
A Florida man named Bucky Flowers was looking out his back window recently when he saw some rustling in the woods and began recording to see if he could get some footage of whatever was going on, and by some major stroke of good fortune, got to witness one of the rarest sights in all of nature.
Florida panthers are some of the most elusive creatures in the Sunshine State. Known as “Lord of the Forest”, this sub-species has been in danger of extinction for some time now.
Increased human migration to Florida in the 50’s and 60’s wreaked havoc on the panther as its habitat was destroyed and those living in close proximity to residents walked around with a target on their backs. The combination of hunting and environmental disruption brought the number of wild Florida panthers to around 20-30 in the 1970’s, and researchers knew they had to act to prevent the official state animal from going away for good.
A combination of protections, wildlife refuges, and the introduction of 8 female pumas from Texas helped to add genetic diversity to the existing population and before too long, their numbers began climbing once again. Today, around 200 panthers roam the southern most parts of the state, and while they’re not fully out of the woods yet, it appears they will continue to be around for many years to come.
But, as with anything, there’s not only upside to major predators existing in an area. We saw one of these felines take out a house catin a driveway and now video is spreading of another panther taking out a familiar, but not as dear to our hearts, creature.
The short clip begins with some unseen commotion around the tree line in a Florida backyard and before long we get to see exactly what was going down.
A panther was chasing a raccoon through the trees and the two burst into the yard right as the panther made its final move, pouncing on the poor trash panda with a vengeance, pinning it to the ground and beginning to drain the life out of it by sinking its teeth into the raccoon’s neck.
It was all over when it started. Raccoons are interesting animals for sure, but there’s no chance they could mount any sort of defense when a big cat sets it sights on them.
Wild that these beautiful, and brutal, creatures are living amongst Floridians. Between them, gators, and pythons, it’s no wonder why the Sunshine State always gets so much press. (I guess meth also has something to do with it…)
“Can you imagine capturing something like this while looking out your window? …
Florida panthers are a subspecies of the species commonly known as mountain lions or cougars. They are generally smaller and leaner than a run of the mill cougar. They sport a reddish brown coat that differs from the yellowish brown of their western cousins.
They are also specially adapted to the unique challenges of hunting in Southern Florida. Where the western cougars are suited to dry, arid landscapes, these panthers are used to hunting in a water abundant, dense vegetative environment where prey and shelter types differ…
This is just an unbelievably lucky thing to witness.”