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In-humanatee US authorities hunting thugs who 'mutilated' manatee by etching 'Trump' onto its back

Manatees, nicknamed "sea cows," are protected under US law, and anyone found guilty of harassing them faces up to a year in prison and a $50,000 (€41,000) fine.

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The manatee's back has 'Trump' etched on it

The manatee's back has 'Trump' etched on it

The manatee's back has 'Trump' etched on it

US wildlife authorities are hunting those responsible “for the cruel and illegal mutilation” of a manatee after the word ‘Trump’ was etched across his back. 

The US Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) opened an investigation after photos showed the protected animal swimming with the outgoing US President’s name clearly scratched into its back.

The marine mammal was spotted on Sunday in Florida's Homosassa River.

Officials said the animal does not appear to be seriously injured, and the word was scraped onto algae growing on its skin.

But a video of the West Indian manatee has led to public outcry.

Manatees, nicknamed "sea cows," are protected under US law, and anyone found guilty of harassing them faces up to a year in prison and a $50,000 (€41,000) fine.

The Centre for Biological Diversity said it was offering a $5,000 (€4,100) reward for information leading to a conviction “for the cruel and illegal mutilation” of the animal.

Officials have warned that the act was a form of harassment of a protected species and is illegal under state and federal law.

There are around 6,300 manatees in the Florida.

They are federally protected under the endangered species act.

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