Cynthia Smoot is the Emmy award-winning co-anchor of the FOX 13 News at 5 p.m. and 11 p.m.
When she's not at the anchor desk, Cynthia's likely covering a story about Florida's fabulous wildlife or people and their pets. She loves nature and enjoys helping Tampa Bay viewers get to know some of the interesting creatures in our own backyard, such as "Winter," the little dolphin at Clearwater Marine Aquarium that lost her tail but now swims with the help of a prosthesis.
She has also reported on some of the area's most notorious animal cruelty cases, following the story of "Casper," a boxer that was nearly starved to death, from the day he arrived at the county shelter to the day he went home with his new adoptive owner.
Cynthia has also traveled to the Everglades to report on the threat of Burmese pythons to our native wildlife, and to Boca Grande, where invasive spiny-tailed iguanas are pushing out threatened gopher tortoises and eating native birds.
In 1998, Cynthia received a prestigious Emmy award for "A Real Life Horse Whisperer," the story of Monty Roberts, who helped revolutionize horse training with his non-violent methods.
Cynthia grew up in Yorktown, Virginia and received her B.A. in communications from James Madison University. She's a 30-year veteran of broadcast journalism, with a career that began in radio as an award-winning morning news anchor and news director, and for the past 28 years, in television as a producer, reporter, and anchor.
Before coming to WTVT in 1997, Cynthia spent 13 years at the FOX owned and operated TV station in Greensboro/Winston-Salem/High Point, North Carolina as the 5, 6 and 10 p.m. news anchor. In North Carolina, she was deeply involved in children's issues and received a number of community awards and honor for her involvement and advocacy on issues relating to foster care and adoption, infant mortality, teenage pregnancy and working women.
Cynthia was also involved with the North Carolina chapter of "Operation Smile," twicetraveling abroad with medical teams to report on the life-changing surgery they perform on children with facial and limb deformities.
Cynthia lives in Tierra Verde with her husband Bill, greyhound Karma, and Bo the cat. Cynthia’s horse, Bucky, prefers the country life in Manatee County.
On a mountain top thousands of miles away from Tampa Bay lives a herd of wild horses known as the Pryor Mountain Mustangs. It’s one of FOX 13’s Cynthia Smoot’s favorite places, and she recently visited the horses made famous by the popular “Cloud the Stallion” series on PBS Nature.
Connor O’Brien and Trevor Clair created the Ornithological Society of Eckerd and, despite limited activities due to the pandemic, they have 67 members who share an interest in birds.
Mustangs Quill and Gunner will do parades, community events and assist in search and rescues efforts as part of their duties with the Hernando County Sheriff’s Office.
People flocking outdoors during pandemic may be having an impact on wildlife, including sea birds that congregate around fishing piers
In just over a month, 17 pelicans have been found near the Skyway fishing pier with serious head wounds, but investigators haven’t figured out who or what is injuring the birds.
At nearly two miles long, the south end of the old Sunshine Skyway Bridge is now the longest fishing pier in the world. It's also one of the most deadliest spots for pelicans, but a local group of volunteers is working to change that.
Being the first female to help ref the big game, Thomas says she feels an additional responsibility as a role model knowing little eyes are watching -- including those in her own home.
How far would you go to help an injured bird? When volunteers from Friends of the Pelicans spotted a young pelican entangled in fishing line on a span of the old Skyway Sunshine Bridge, they knew he would die if they didn't do something.
Peace Love Mustangs intends to rescue as many wild horses as they can, train them, and find them new homes.
The Humane Society of Tampa Bay saves and adopts out thousands of cats and kittens every year. But what about those cats that come in that aren't so social? They don't go to homes; they go to work.