Though there are several different types of squirrels that you will often see running around the Hudson Valley, a brightly colored red one isn't something we often come across.

Grey squirrel yawning
Dgwildlife/Getty Images

Obviously the grey squirrel is likely the most popular, then there's the black squirrel and of course the ultra-rare albino variety, but a fire engine red shade is pretty out of the ordinary.

Putnam County Man Spray Painting Squirrels Red

The New York State Department of Environmental Control (DEC) has a lot under their purview, responding to more than 100,000 calls, inquiries and/or complaints last year alone. I'd be curious to know how often they are involved in an incident like the one reported on January 13th of this year in Putnam County.

READ MORE: NYS DEC Uncovers Deer Poaching Network

According to a recent report released by the DEC, Environmental Conservation Police Officers were involved in charging a man Putnam Valley for a 'series of squirrel-painting incidents in the town of Patterson.'

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The individual, whose name was not released, was suspected of 'painting squirrels red and releasing them in a nearby park.' Two ECOs met with representatives of the Putnam County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in December 23rd regarding the suspect and alleged squirrel painting incident.

Just five days later, the ECOs, while conducting surveillance in the area of the incidents, actually observed a 'bright red squirrel crossing the street less than a block away from the subject's residence.'

DEC Delivers Newsletter
DEC Delivers Newsletter

Putnam Man Admits To Spray Painting Squirrels, Cites 'Tracking Method'

On January 13th, both representatives from SPCA and the ECOs on the case interviewed the Patterson man who admitted to trapping the squirrels and painting them 'in order to keep track of those returning to his yard and causing his dogs to bark.'

DEC Delivers Newsletter
DEC Delivers Newsletter

The subject was subsequently ticketed for violations related to trapping, transporting and liberating of wildlife.

In addition, he was charged for the mistreatment of animals by the Putnam County SPCA Detectives.

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Gallery Credit: Paty Quyn