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Officials Ask Vandals To Stop Painting On Animals

Florida officials are asking vandals to stop painting on animals.

A few days after finding local gopher tortoises covered in hues of blue and red, Florida officials encountered a white ibis bird painted orange, CNN reported.

“Please keep your paint on the canvas and off of wildlife,” the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission posted on its Facebook page. “Tortoises and turtles don't need touch-ups!”

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While the act may seem harmless, officials say painting on animals could possibly earn you some prison time.

“White ibis are protected in Florida,” the commission added. “Not only is it illegal to paint them, but it is cruel to paint any wildlife.”

Gopher tortoises are also protected by law because they are considered a threatened species, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission website. Painting their shells can affect their health and have tremendous consequences.

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"The paint can hinder their ability to absorb vitamins they need from the sun, cause respiratory problems, allow toxic chemicals into the bloodstream and more," Florida officials concluded.

Sources: CNN, FWC / Photo credit: Officer Amy Moore and Carol Lyn Parrish via ​CNN

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