Posted: Tuesday, January 12, 2021. 6:45 pm CST.
By BBN Staff: There is outrage in the scientific community within the United States and an ongoing federal investigation after supporters of President Donald Trump carved his name onto the back of a Florida Manatee.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service issued a notice yesterday that the investigation was underway and asked anyone with information on the issue to come forward. Under US Law, harassing a manatee can result in $100,000 fine for individuals, and $200,000 fine for organizations.
Vice.com reports that several marine biologists have commented on the atrocious incident, and noted that the animal must have endured considerable pain and discomfort during it’s mutilation. Others have noted that the injuries could lead to infection and further compromise the animal’s health.
Belize’s own renowned manatee researcher has expressed his disgust over the incident via social media, saying “The recent issue of manatee engraved with “TRUMP” on its back serves as a brutal reminder of how important our efforts are and the cruelty that still exist in humanity!”
Manatees were endangered in the US up until 2017 when their designation was downgraded to “Threatened.” In Belize, manatees are still endangered and are protected under the Wildlife Protection Act Chapter 220 of the Laws of Belize.
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