Ricky Pires Director,
“Wings of Hope” Program
In this challenge, elementary students learn about the Florida panther’s diet (what it eats and what it doesn’t) as well as the diet of other critters that live with the panther. They learn to identify native and exotic animals found in southwest Florida while listening to fun facts about these critters! Then, students are trained to identify animal tracks! They are shadowed by Wings of Hope staff and Environmental Humanities students who teach them how to tell different tracks apart from each other. They learn that the Florida panther is an umbrella species, so when we save the panther, we save everything that falls under the panther’s umbrella. Things that fall under the panther’s umbrella include all south Florida plants and animals, as well as basic essentials such as air and water.