An animal rights organisation known as the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has suffered severe backlash for demanding farmers not kill the mice plaguing their properties in regional Australia.
PETA Media Officer Aleesha Naxakis came under fire after telling farmers to avoid using poison to kill the animals, instead to use humane traps to allow them to be “caught gently and released unharmed.”
“These bright, curious animals are just looking for food to survive,” Naxakis told NCA NewsWire.
“They shouldn’t be robbed of that right because of the dangerous notion of human supremacy.”
Naxakis’ comments have sparked an angry backlash from farmers and Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack, who lashed PETA as “idiots who have never been outside the city”.
“The real rats in this whole plague are the people who come out with bloody stupid ideas like this,” he said, according to news.com.au.
“Their thinking around this is reprehensible, when you have farmers struggling.
“You have these people who have never left the city and wouldn’t know if their backside was on fire, then all of a sudden they’re telling farmers what to do?
“The only good mouse is a dead mouse.”
Last week the NSW government announced a $50m rescue package, free poison for farmers and mice bait rebates of $1000 for small businesses and $500 for households.
NSW Deputy Premier John Barilaro slammed the PETA spokeswoman’s comments as “ridiculous” and an “insult” to farmers doing it tough.
“I would laugh if this wasn’t so serious,” he said.