Florida Panther Pounces On A House Cat In Neighborhood Driveway

Florida panther attacks cat in driveway
YouTube/H Media

House cats may show off some slick abilities at times, but they can’t compete with their wild cousins.

We’ve seen cats catch an owl, fight off a coyote, and even stare down a moose, but it’s nothing but bad news when they come face to face with a panther.

The population of Florida panthers has been in serious trouble for many years. The predator known as “Lord of the Forest” took the brunt of the large human migration to the Sunshine State in the 1970s, reducing the number of cats in the wild to around 20-30, due to hunting pressure and habitat disturbance.

Researchers began developing strategies to save the animal, which was experiencing severe problems due to inevitable inbreeding. The restoration efforts culminated in the 1990’s with 8 female pumas from Texas being transported to the area in hopes of increasing genetic variability and being a boon for the species.

The strategy, along with various other protections put in place after it was listed as an endangered species, have grown the population to an estimated 200. While it’s nowhere near the numbers that once ranged from Florida to Louisiana, it appears to have been successful, at least to this point.

But the species is far from out of the woods. Continued suburban expansion remains an issue for the wildcats, as each breeding unit (one male and two to five females) required around 200 square miles of habitat. Cars are also a major issue for the panther population, with 26 killed by automobiles in 2018 alone.

Naturally, as more of these large predator cats begin roaming the southern parts of Florida, there’s going to be an increase in encounters with humans, livestock, and pets. One ranch in the heartland of panther territory estimates they lose between 5 and 7% of their calf crop annually due to predation. It also means that quite a few pets may go missing, like we see in this video out of South Florida.

A security camera captured a tough to watch scene when a panther locked eyes on a house cat and took advantage of the opportunity, pouncing on the cat and pinning it down on the driveway before locking jaws on its head and carrying it away to eat in peace.

A rough scene for sure and it shows why some people don’t want any further growth of the native species, but it’s hard to argue against saving a creature that has long called the Florida swamps home and is the state’s official animal.

If you’re in South Florida, you may want to keep your cats inside…

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock