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  1. ITV Report

American 'professional huntress' sparks outrage posing with dead goat in Islay

The Scottish government is to review the law around animal culling after an American TV hunter angered thousands of people by shooting and posing with animals on the island of Islay.

Larysa Switlyk, who describes herself as a "professional huntress" posted pictures on Twitter next to dead animals, including a goat, stag and sheep, during a trip to the Inner Hebrides islands.

Twitter users condemned the images as "sickening" and "truly abhorrent" but the Scottish Government said responsible and appropriate culling of some wild animals, including deer and goats, is not illegal.

However in response to the growing online criticism, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon will consider whether the laws need to be changed.

Larysa Switlyk said hunting in Scotland is 'unreal'. Credit: Larysa Switlyk/Twitter

She tweeted: "Totally understandable why the images from Islay of dead animals being held up as trophies is so upsetting and offensive to people."

Ms Switlyk revealed she has since quit social media saying in an Instagram post: "I’m headed out on a bush plane for my next hunting adventure and will be out of service for 2 weeks.

"Nothing better than disconnecting from this social media driven world and connecting back with nature.

"Hopefully that will give enough time for all the ignorant people out there sending me death threats to get educated on hunting and conservation."

Celebrities were among those vent their frustration at the images.

Ricky Gervais mocked the TV show host quoting her version of "Fun".

The former Great British Bake Off host Sue Perkins also responded to Ms Switlyk's picture saying "a beautiful wild goat indeed. And then you killed it."

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Without a natural predator, wild goats are classed as invasive species and culling is used to control their population, with several tourism companies offering the chance to shoot them.

Some say the review from the Scottish Government could harm an industry which is believed to be worth more than £150 million a year.

Colin Shedden, a country director for the British Association for Shooting and Conservation (BASC) said: "The most important thing about much of that expenditure is it takes place in the Autumn/Winter months when other tourists are thin in the ground."

Mr Shedden added: "So lots of local businesses do rely on an extended season due to country support."

Colin Shedden, who works for BASC said local businesses rely on an extended season. Credit: ITV News

Sarah Moyes, campaigner for OneKind which campaigns against animal cruelty, said: "It's utterly shocking to see these images of Larysa Switlyk and other hunters posing for photos with the wild animals they killed on a recent trip to Scotland.

"Yet again, instead of celebrating Scotland's magnificent wildlife, we are seeing these beautiful animals exploited in the name of sport.

"This is not the kind of tourism we should be encouraging in Scotland, let alone allowing to happen in the 21st century."