"The United States Fish and Wildlife Service is searching for information on the person or persons responsible for the harassment of a manatee discovered Sunday in the headwaters of the Homosassa River", the Chronicle's Matthew Beck reported.
The Citrus County Chronicle reported Monday that a manatee, a large aquatic mammal sometimes referred to as a "Sea Cow", was found with the words "Trump" scraped in its back.
Officials with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service would not comment on the investigation as it is now ongoing, the report says.
Officials are asking for anyone in the area or elsewhere who may have pertinent intel on this vandalized manatee to pass their tips to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. The seasonal influx of the West Indian manatee is well known along the Nature Coast.
FWS is looking for any information that may assist with the case, and urged anyone with any information to contact the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation hotline at 888-404-3922.
Protected under the Endangered Species Act since 1963, manatees are slow-moving plant eaters with no natural enemies.
Harassment of a manatee is a federal offense punishable by a fine of up to $50,000 and/or up to one year in prison.