The internet is on the hunt for a vandal who wrote “TRUMP” onto a manatee’s back in Citrus County, Florida.
⚠️HELP FIND WHO MUTILATED A MANATEE: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is investigating who carved the word “Trump” on a Florida manatee. USFWS is looking for any information: cal Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation hotline at 888-404-3922. https://t.co/FXQ2l3fYTj pic.twitter.com/jI9kL1BNe5
— Eric Feigl-Ding (@DrEricDing) January 11, 2021
The manatee was discovered in Homosassa River on Florida’s Gulf Coast north of Tampa, and was brought to the attention of the United States Fish and Wildlife Service over the weekend. Harassment of a manatee is a Class A federal criminal offense punishable by a $50,000 fine and/or a year in federal prison.
Speaking to the Citrus County Chronicle, Craig Cavanna, senior federal wildlife officer and current investigating officer, stated, “It’s been my experience that this is very out of character for this community. Wildlife conservation is a core value in Citrus County. That’s why it’s called the Nature Coast.”
It is unclear if the animal had been harmed by the vandalism. Official reports have not indicated the method used to write Trump’s name, leaving some to wonder if the name was merely written in the algae on the animal’s back or if it was carved in by a more painful method.
Scraped, not carved. As in, removed the dirt and algae off of its back.
Still illegal, but let’s be clear for the people panicking in the comments that the manatee appears to not have been physically harmed at all.
— GrainOverGrit (@GrainOverGrit) January 11, 2021
Here is the video of the poor manatee that had “TRUMP” carved into its body.
Minding it’s own business and some monster(s) came along and did this.
— Yashar Ali 🐘 (@yashar) January 11, 2021
You’re not even…
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