Tess Talley is an American hunter who claims to be a conservationist. However, the hunts she proudly documents on her social media pages go against what most people consider to be conservationism. Talley has sparked extreme outrage for her hunting techniques and the graphic photos she takes with the animals she kills. She has become particularly well known for one specific picture she posted of herself posing alongside a slain giraffe. Now, she is publicly defending herself for the photo and the shocking kill, according to CBS News.
The first time Talley attracted negative online attention was when she publicly documented one of the hunts she conducted in the United States. While hunting in Texas, she reportedly paid thousands of dollars to shoot and kill a wildebeest. She later posted photos of the animal’s corpse online. Two years ago, she then headed to South Africa for the sole purpose of hunting the wildlife there. That was when she took down a black giraffe, an animal that is considered to be a rare species.
When she posted the photo of the dead animal on her Instagram page, she was flooded with angry comments. She defended herself then and continues to stand by her decision now. She explained her reasoning for the controversial kill during a recent interview. Talley emphasized that she posts pictures of the animals she kills as a way to “honor” them.
“I mean it’s what we’ve always done. There’s no disrespect for the animal. I know where my meat has come from. I’m strong enough to harvest it myself.”
Talley believes that the type of hunting she does promotes conservationism because she is specifically targeting male animals that are no longer young enough to reproduce. The goal is to allow the younger male members of the species a greater chance of survival, thus hopefully allowing the species to repopulate at a greater rate.
"I am proud to hunt... and I am proud of that giraffe." Tess Talley is speaking out for the first time since her photo of a giraffe she killed in South Africa prompted worldwide outrage. https://t.co/OAbtv3b3uh #10TV— 10TV.com (@10TV) June 7, 2019
Still, most animal conservationists stand in strong opposition of Talley and her hunting style. Kitty Block, the CEO of the Humane Society, said that if Talley really wanted to protect endangered animals, there are better methods she could use.
“They’re not driven by this to be conservationists. If they wanted to be a good conservationist they don’t have to kill the animal to do it.”
Talley’s Instagram showcases a variety of her past kills. One of the most disturbing images is perhaps that of a kangaroo Talley claims to have shot herself. She smiles proudly at the camera while holding up the animal’s head.