Officials have since removed the blue paint and released the tortoise back into its burrow.
Someone in Florida painted an endangered gopher tortoise in blue paint, and Florida Fish and Wildlife is hoping that someone has information on who did it.
Officers with the FWC responded to a call about an injured tortoise, and when they arrived at the Martin County residence, they found a gopher tortoise covered entirely in blue paint.
This gopher tortoise was painted blue and the Florida FWC wants any information regarding the incident.
“It is both illegal and very harmful to the health of a gopher tortoise to paint any part of their body or shell,” the FWC said on its Facebook page. “Paint can inhibit their ability to absorb vitamins from the sun’s UV rays through their shells, has the potential to cause respiratory problems and can lead to harmful chemicals being absorbed into their bloodstream.”
The tortoise was taken to an animal rehabilitation facility where the paint was removed from the tortoise and released back into its burrow, with a slight blue hue, the FWC said.
If anyone has any information on this crime, or see any turtle or other wildlife that has been painted, please call the Florida Fish and Wildlife Alert Hotline at 888-404-3922.