Some people keep dogs in their backyards. In the Florida Keys, some residents have deer the size of a golden retriever in their yards. As sea levels rise and salt water climbs higher on the islands, it’s shrinking habitat for this deer — which already has an estimated population of at most 1,000.
Chris Bergh, the South Florida Program Manager with The Nature Conservancy, says the changes in sea level over the past decades have caused pine rockland forests in the Keys, the main habitat for the Key deer, to recede by hundreds of meters.
This shrinkage is raising major ethical and logistical questions for the federal wildlife managers tasked with keeping endangered species like the Key deer alive.