The United States Fish and Wildlife Service is seeking information on the individual or individuals who scraped “TRUMP” into the back of an endangered manatee’s back. The mutilated creature was discovered swimming in the headwaters of Florida’s Homosassa River, north of Tampa.
The Citrus County Chronicle reports: “He added harassment of a manatee, protected by the Endangered Species Act, is a Class A, federal criminal offense punishable by a $50,000 fine and/or up to one-year in federal prison. The seasonal influx of the West Indian manatee is well known along the Nature Coast. The slow-moving, warm-blooded mammals seek sanctuary in the spring-fed waters along Citrus County’s coastline making them accessible to swimmers and boaters. Laws protect the animals from harassment by swimmers and those operating vessels.”
Call the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation hotline at 888-404-3922 to report information.