Joining an emotive Animals Australia campaign against duck shooting has backfired for four sportspeople.
Billboards and posters have been plastered across Melbourne buildings and train stations, depicting the players of various sports holding Photoshopped dead ducks. Alongside the emotive images are the words, “Duck shooting is not a sport”.
Featured in the campaign are Essendon Football Club player David Zaharakis, Australian cricketer Peter Siddle, Opals Basketballer Erin Phillips and Diamonds Netballer Sharni Layton.
Animals Australia launched the campaign with a video of the players telling the audience why they enjoyed playing their respective games, then continuing to slam duck shooting.
“It’s mind blowing that it’s even allowed,” Erin Phillips said. “Ducks don’t have a voice so it’s really disgusting to me that people actually think duck shooting is a sport.”
“It’s a coward’s act,” said Peter Siddle. “In duck shooting it’s one man verses a small, little creature that’s defenceless.”
“It’s definitely not a fair, equal playing field,” said David Zaharakis.
“When there’s guns and things like that involved the animals don’t stand a chance, so what is a sport if it’s not even from both sides,” said Sharni Layton.
In response to the campaign, social media users have been outing the players as meat-eaters and slamming them for being “hypocrites”.
An image posted on Zaharkis’ Instagram account features the football player with a large plate and a rack of beef ribs. The caption alongside the image is “Dinosaur BBQ in #Syracuse #fullrackofribs #roadtrip”.
Also circulating the internet is a picture from Phillips’ Instagram, which has since been deleted. The image is of chicken burgers, with the caption, “Cooked up one of my favourite recipes of Mum’s. Homemade chicken burgers!!”
Social media users are encouraging the shooting sports fraternity to share the images far and wide.