The available information indicates that the PCC continues to be found within the boundaries of its historic range. Sixty-one % or 9,180 acres of historic core soils remain undeveloped and 46% or 5,646 acres of secondary soils remain undeveloped (Figure 3.4)(Table 3.1). Adding the losses of both core and secondary soils, we estimate that 54% of the original lands historically available to the PCC remain potentially available for use by the PCC. If we remove hardwood swamps from the core and secondary soils, then 6,287 acres (42%) of core, and 5,325 acres (43%) of secondary remain undeveloped from historic levels, or 43% overall.
Genetic analysis indicates that habitat fragmentation and isolation are likely the reasons behind the current partitioning into 13 populations, although there are natural habitat features that possibly aided in some of these isolation factors (i.e., unsuitable soils or stream systems). The PCC is listed as a State Species of Special Concern by Florida’s Endangered and Threatened Species Rule. It has been afforded protection by State law since 1989. The species is provided the following protective provisions: “No person shall take, possess, transport, or sell any species of special concern included in this subsection or parts thereof or their nests or eggs except as authorized by permit from the executive director, permits being issued upon reasonable conclusion that the permitted activity will not be detrimental to the survival potential of the species. For purposes of this section, the definition of the word take in Rule 68A-1.004, F.A.C., applies.”