After killing a giraffe, cutting out its heart (yes, you read it right), and posing with it in a picture she posted to Facebook, a South African trophy hunter has received a lot of criticism.
She has since defended her stance, arguing that trophy hunting is good for both the economy and the animals.
Merelize Van Der Merwe’s husband gave her a present she had always desired for Valentine’s Day: the chance to shoot a giraffe. A sick thing to want for the day, but hey… There are all kinds of people. Her trophy hunter husband paid $2000 for her experience, which she immediately bragged about on Facebook.
However, no act of cruelty goes unnoticed these days, particularly if it’s documented on social media.
How does the story go?
According to the Daily Mail, Merelize Van Der Merwe, who, as we mentioned before, is a South African citizen, shot and killed a 17-year-old bull giraffe on February 14 in the country’s North.
She then proceeded to gloat and posed with the dead animal to publicize her trophy hunting exploits, and she didn’t stop there, posting grisly photos of herself holding the elderly giraffe’s heart. She boasted in the caption that he was ‘over the moon’ with her gift.
The 32-year-social old’s media posts sparked outrage, with one of her graphic images captioned, “Ever wondered how big a giraffe’s heart is?” Reminiscing about the chase, she went on to say that she felt like a “little girl” and that she had been counting down the days for two weeks.
Who is this woman?
The mother of one, who has hunted over 500 animals so far, including tigers, leopards, and elephants, said she’s been waiting years for her “own perfect bull” giraffe. Her husband wanted to pay for her to shoot a giraffe as a Valentine’s Day gift because he knew it was her dream to get her own bull, she added in her article.
The pictures soon went viral online, infuriating animal rights activists. Van Der Merwe, however, stood firm in her convictions, claiming that killing the elderly bull giraffe helped save endangered species in South Africa. She also slammed her detractors, referring to them as “triggered leftists,” and declared that nothing would stop her from going big game hunting.
Trophy hunter posts gruesome photo of dead giraffe — and its heart https://t.co/ZbS3vaw4NC
— National Post (@nationalpost) February 23, 2021
What about the giraffes?
Giraffes are classified as an endangered species by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. As they teeter on the verge of extinction, the trophy hunting industry only serves to increase their chance of extinction.