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Actress's awkward gaffe in Instagram post about bushfires

A Colombian actress has been slammed by social media users after appearing to mix up a sloth with a koala in a heartfelt message about the Australian bushfires.

Luz Marilyn Patino Zapata, better known as Marilyn Patino, posted a photo of her cuddling a stuffed sloth toy on Instagram for her 860,000 followers in a message about animals affected by the devastating Australian wildfires.

But Instagram users criticised the 45-year-old for apparently confusing the koala with a sloth that is endemic to Central and South America.

Colombian actress Marilyn Patino pictured in an Instagram post where she cuddles up to a sloth. She appeared to mistake the animal for a koala.
Colombian actress Marilyn Patino has been slammed an Instagram post about the Australian bushfires where she appeared to mistake a sloth for a koala. Source: Marilyn Patino/Instagram

In her first message, which she later edited, the Colombian star said: “I think this is the only way I will ever see them (koalas). I feel so guilty, Australia.”

Following the online criticism, Patino added: “I think some people failed to understand my message, but I am not going to delete it as my goal worked. Thank you social media.

“And for those calling me ignorant, I have never said I consider myself intelligent.”

The actress also pointed out she was vegetarian and was doing her best to cut down her carbon footprint.

“I love how you promote a lack of general knowledge,” one person wrote.

Marilyn Patino later changed the Australia bushfires post after criticism, adding: 'I never said I consider myself intelligent.'
She later changed the Instagram post after the criticism, adding: 'I never said I consider myself intelligent.' Source: CEN/Australscope

“Such a shame! She feels guilty but does not know the difference between animals. The things people will do to gain attention,” another said.

A third person added: “It doesn’t matter whether it is a koala or a sloth, with everything going on in the world we are acting like idiots and we’re not even aware.”

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