Richard Dawkins has mocked the unfathomable logic behind slaughtering an animal and posing with its lifeless body after an Idaho huntress was photographed with a dead giraffe.
Sabrina Corgatelli boasted on Facebook of her latest kill, posting a picture of herself standing in the crook of the deceased animal's neck while smiling.
Defending the pictures, Corgatelli told the Today Show on Monday that she has a "connection" with the animals she hunts, adding that just because she kills them, does not mean there is a lack of "respect".
But biologist and author, Dawkins, has pointed out the ludicrousy of such sentiments, comparing Corgatelli's comments with that of someone accused of murder then claiming it was an "ethical" execution, just because they "loved and respected" their victim.
Dawkins, 74, also wrote a letter as though from Corgatelli to the giraffe.
Your Honour, I plead guilty, but I loved and respected the victim so much, what else could I do? An ETHICAL murder. https://t.co/hB6zZAHeUq— Richard Dawkins (@RichardDawkins) August 3, 2015
I have so much respect and love for you that I had to kill you.
Makes sense.— Richard Dawkins (@RichardDawkins) August 3, 2015
Speaking to Carson Daly of the Today Show from South Africa via Skype, Corgatelli said: "When you hunt an animal everyone thinks you are just a cold-hearted killer. It's not that.
"There is a connection with the animal, but because we hunt them doesn't mean we don't respect them."
She added: "Giraffes are very, very dangerous animals. They could hurt you seriously very quickly."
When asked if she was worried about any possible retribution, Corgatelli replied: "Everything I've done is legal. How can you fault somebody because of their hobbies?"
Dawkins said he is still bemused how anyone could enjoy killing a wild animal.
Sorry, I shouldn't have used the word "despise". But I remain baffled as to how anyone can get PLEASURE from killing a lion or a zebra.— Richard Dawkins (@RichardDawkins) August 3, 2015
On 25 July, Corgatelli posted the picture of her stood with the giraffe, which she shot during a legal two-week hunting trip in South Africa.
She wrote: “Day #2 I got a amazing old Giraffe. Such an amazing animal!! I couldn’t be any happier!! My emotion after getting him was a feeling I will never forget!!!.”
The international outrage that followed the shooting of beloved Zimbabwean lion, Cecil, last month does not seem to have dissuaded the trophy hunter from pursuing the controversial "sport".
Yet her post has been met with an avalanche of abuse, with insults ranging from the obscene to pleas for her to explain how she is able to describe the animal as “amazing” and yet take such pleasure in its death.
If the negative publicity is affecting Corgatelli, whose trip was hosted by the Old Days hunting firm in South Africa, she’s not letting on.
Subsequent excitable posts have seen her posing with a dead warthog, impala, crocodile and blue Wildebeest.
At one point Corgatelli even updated her cover photograph to showcase her giraffe trophy.
Her posts come in the wake of international outrage sparked by American dentist Walter Palmer, who killed Cecil the lion last month.
Zimbabwe is seeking Palmer's extradition from the United States on illegal hunting charges, yet Palmer claims he has done nothing wrong as he believed it to be a "legal hunt".
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When Corgatelli was asked by one Facebook user if she was allowed to kill such animals, she replied: “There are parts of Africa you can’t, but where I’m at it completely legal.”
Corgatelli is reported to have taunted animal rights champions with a post of the giraffe superimposed over a 'meme' of Leonardo DiCaprio holding a cocktail and grinning.
The post, which was later deleted, was captioned: "To all the haters, stay tuned! You gonna hav so much more to be p****d about!"