American hunter Tess Thompson Talley defends killing rare black giraffe as “conservation”

A tweet denouncing an American hunter name Tess Thompson Talley for killing a rare black giraffe has garnered thousands of retweets and outrage.

Talley, a Kentucky woman, stalked and hunted the giraffe more than a year ago. But the tweet sparked new criticism of her action.

In a statement, Talley defended her hunt, saying that by slaying the giraffe, she helped conserve the animals through “game management,” protecting the giraffe population because the animal shot was too old to breed and had killed three younger bulls.

“The giraffe I hunted was the South African subspecies of giraffe. The numbers of this subspecies is actually increasing due, in part, to hunters and conservation efforts paid for in large part by big-game hunting. The breed is not rare in any way other than it was very old. Giraffes get darker with age,” she told the Today show in a statement.

Talley is correct. It does appear the black coat is a byproduct of age and not indicative of a rare species, Giraffe Conservation Foundation co-founder Julian Fennessy told Yahoo Lifestyle.

Fennessy identified the animal as the Southern giraffe, which is not only not rare but increasing in the wild, he said.

But still some people reacted with anger, including well known animal loving celebrities like Ricky Gervais. Actor Debra Messing posted this comment:

Tess Thompson Talley from Nippa, Kentucky is 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. A rare animal that will be extinct by the time her grandchildren can go and gutlessly sit in the brush with a scope and pull a trigger. It does not take skill to have a ranger track a giraffe for you, and with the aid of night vision glasses and a scope, pull a trigger like some Carnival game. If you need to eat a giraffe? Get a bow and arrow and make it at least a fair fight. I am disgusted by people like you Tess. You reek of privilege and ignorance. Shame on you. And your husband Andrew Claude. Unconscionable. Irreparable damage. Irreplaceable beauty. #tessthompsontalley #trophyhunting #trophyhunter

Liked it? Take a second to support Critter Files on Patreon!

About the Author

Peg Fong

Peg Fong is also in recovery from newspapers

Leave a Comment