The American woman who received death threats after she killed a giraffe in South Africa says she has no regrets almost a year after photos of her proudly posing with the dead animal went viral.
Tess Thompson Talley, 38, defended her love of hunting in a CBS interview airing on Friday, saying: ‘They [animals] are put there for us, we harvest them, we eat them!’
In a pre-packaged segment, Talley was seen at her home in Odessa, Texas, where she was dressed in camouflage gear and filmed killing a wildebeest on a wildlife ranch.
When asked about the black giraffe she had killed during her gaming trip to South Africa, she laughed: ‘He was delicious!’
Tess Thompson Talley appeared on CBS on Friday morning, where she defended her love of hunting, almost a year after pictures of her posing with a black giraffe she had killed went viral
Talley was branded a ‘white savage’ after photos of her proudly posing with a dead giraffe went viral in July 2018
Talley, who works in a ball-bearing factory, then showed off the gun case she had made from the skin of the dead animal.
‘This is a part of the black giraffe that I shot, something I could take around with me, and have on my hunts!’ she stated, as she slung the case around.
‘I also have decorative pillows made out of him, and everybody loves them,’ she excitedly declared.
After the segment aired, Talley joined CBS This Morning live in the studio, where she was grilled by a group of panelists, including Gayle King.
During the chat, Talley insisted that her hunting trips were actually helpful to the animal kingdom, rather than harmful.
‘We are preserving… we are managing herds, we’re managing numbers of wildlife,’ she insisted.
Talley later declared: ‘I am proud to be a hunter, and I’m proud to hunt, and I am proud of [killing] that giraffe’.
In a pre-packaged segment, Talley showed off the gun case she had made from the skin of the giraffe
The defiant hunter was also filmed hunting a wildebeest on a wildlife ranch in her home state of Texas
Talley addressed the backlash during her live appearance on CBS This Morning
Her appearance on CBS comes almost a year after the images of her posing with the giraffe caused outrage online.
The shocking pictures were originally taken in 2017, but only exploded on the internet last July.
After the images went viral, Talley received a barrage of death threats on social media.
‘Tess Thompson Talley: Here’s hoping you die a horrific bloody death,’ one wrote.
‘I hope that Tess Thompson Talley will die the worst possible death,’ posted another.
Speaking on CBS on Friday, Talley said of the backlash: ‘It got really bad, (people) spreading out addresses, showing up my work, calling employer trying to get me fired.’
Talley lives in Odessa, Texas and has been a proud hunter for many years, with her gaming trips taking her across the world
ANIMALS TESS THOMPSON TALLEY HAS KILLED AND POSED WITH
Despite garnering intense backlash for killing a variety of different animals, none of the creatures Talley has posed with are currently endangered. Populations of the animals she has killed are stable or have increased in recent years.
Black giraffe – a subspecies whose population is up 167 per cent since 1979 to more than 21,000.
Plains zebra – according to UCN’s Red List of Threatened Species, the plains zebra is not endangered, and there are around 750,000 of the animals across Africa
Impala – one of the most abundant antelopes in Africa, the impala population is currently stable
Warthog – the warthog population in Africa is not currently under threat of extinction, according to the African Wildlife Foundation
Kangaroo – an animal native to Australia, there are more than 45 million kangaroos in the country – double that of the human population.
However, she maintained she has an ‘amazing boss’ who supported her throughout the ordeal, and that she would do it all again.
In addition to death threats from Twitter users, Talley also became a target of media outlets and celebrities when the pictures went viral last July.
News outlet Africa Digest called Talley a ‘savage’ in the tweet.
‘White American savage who is partly a Neanderthal comes to Africa and shoot down a very rare black giraffe courtesy of South Africa stupidity,’ their tweet read.
Several celebrities also hit out at Talley, including Will and Grace actress Debra Messing, who called the hunter a ‘disgusting, vile, amoral, heartless, selfish murderer’.
‘With joy in her black heart and a beaming smile she lies next to the dead carcass of a *rare* black giraffe in South Africa. Giraffes are the epitome of gentle giants. They glide across the plains, like liquid; awe inspiring creatures who spend their days eating leaves and caring for their young. How DARE she,’ Messing wrote in a lengthy post.
Meanwhile, comedian Ricky Gervais also skewered Talley, saying: ‘What’s 16 feet tall and has a c*** on the back of its neck?’
The avid hunter has also posed for pictures alongside a variety of other exotic animals that she has killed, including this one that shows her with a dead zebra
Talley is pictured with a kangaroo she killed during a gaming trip. She has posted several images of herself with dead animals on her Facebook page
Gervais also attacked Talley’s argument likening the death to euthanizing a pet. ‘Imagine a vet paying you to put down your dog and then taking a selfie next to the corpse,’ he tweeted.
‘I’m sick of Trophy Hunters trying to excuse their grim sport by saying they provide a service. They exploit the needs of the poor,’ he added.
Last year, Talley shrugged off the controversy, exclusively telling DailyMail.com: ‘They’re using it for their fame.. I don’t really think they have a point.’
Talley spoke exclusively with DailyMail.com last year, where she brushed off criticism from celebrities, claiming they were only trying to attack her for fame
Meanwhile, the avid hunter has also posed for pictures alongside a variety of other exotic animals that she has killed.
In pictures shared to Facebook, she is seen smiling alongside a dead zebra and a dead kangaroo.
During her CBS appearance, Gayle King stated that Talley’s interest in hunting seemed ‘to go beyond a sport’, as she enjoyed making products out of animal skins and posting pictures online.
Talley defended the snaps, saying: ‘The pictures are a tradition that hunters have done long before social media. When social media came around, that’s when there was an issue, that’s when people started backlash’
‘I was posting that for myself, my friends and family, and tonnes of like-minded people I communicate with and associate with on social media.’
‘I was posting that for myself, my friends and family, and tonnes of like-minded people’: Talley defending posing with pictures of animals that she had shot and killed
Despite the death threats, Talley appeared confident and upbeat during her appearance on CBS This Morning and vowed to continue hunting