There has been another sighting of the Eastpoint Panther.
About two weeks ago, a resident of Bayshore Drive spotted a large black cat at 9:15 a.m.
The witness, who wished to remain anonymous said, “It crossed the road in front of me. It didn’t seem to be bothered by me. I wasn’t afraid. I was in my truck. It looked very healthy. I wish I couldn’t have gotten a photograph. I was so in awe. It was beautiful.”
He said the animal appeared to weigh about 125 pounds and was completely black. After viewing pictures on the internet, he said the body appeared similar in configuration to that of a Florida panther. The tail was long, held extended and slightly curled up at the tip.
He did not believe the cat was wet or dirty.
Fearing ridicule, the witness kept his secret for five days until something happened that gave him a shot of confidence.
In front of his home, about 500 feet from his morning sighting of the cat, he found a track. He said it was in a patch of damp sand. He went and found his wife to show her and revealed his sighting of the cat for the first time.
He said he was unaware of other sightings being new to the area.
His picture is shown above with his hand in the frame for scale.
Adam Warwick, wildlife biologist, said the photograph does appear to show the paw print of a very large cat. He said, if possible, future photographs of tracks should include a ruler. He said it was difficult to determine the print’s origin with a single track.
Bill Sermons a spokesman for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission said the consensus among FWC experts is that it is a track of a large dog.
He said the parallel front toes, an “X” pattern between front toes and a rounded heel are all indications that the track is canine in origin.