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Trophy hunter criticised for dead giraffe pose in South Africa

BBC Africa/Maximilian Kasseh, Jr.

A US hunter has come under criticism after pictures taken in South Africa of her posing with a dead giraffe went viral.

Images of the woman, identified as Tess Thompson Talley, posted on the Africa Digest Twitter account last month have been rewetted thousands of times.

It described her as a "white American savage" and called on people to unite to protect wildlife.

But Ms. Talley has defended the killing in a statement quoted by CBS News.

She said the trophy kill was actually helping conservation, because by killing the old, male giraffe, she had prevented it from attacking younger giraffes.

"Now that the giraffe is gone, the younger bulls are able to breed. This is called conservation through game management," her statement adds.

Ms. Talley hunted the giraffe, which can reportedly provide about 2,000lb (907kg) of meat, last year.

USA Today quotes a deleted post on Facebook where she said: "Prayers for my once in a lifetime dream hunt came true today! Spotted this rare black giraffe bull and stalked him for quite a while."

There is no separate black giraffe species, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).

Hollywood actress Debra Messing is among those on social media to have questioned why it was necessary to kill an animal "for fun."


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