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'He will have to answer for himself': David Attenborough slammed Bear Grylls for killing animals

The Island with Bear Grylls aired on Channel 4 has seen its participants killing caiman crocodiles, turkeys, and pigs for the sake of their survival.
Getty Images
Getty Images

Sir David Attenborough, best known as the father of modern nature documentary once pummelled Bear Grylls for his indifference towards the barbaric slaughtering of innocent animals on his famous TV show The Island. Attenborough accused Grylls of killing animals for the sake of entertainment and says he just can't bear it!

Episodes of The Island has featured contestants killing animals as part of the survival strategy involved in the show. Among the unfortunate lot were caiman crocodiles, pigs, and turkeys. 

Attenborough told The Sun: “We’ve never killed an animal.

“Bear Grylls will have to answer for himself.

“But I wouldn’t willingly kill an animal just to get a shot.”

Bear Grylls, popularly known for his bizarre survival tactics in reality television series Man vs. Wild has been under fire before, facing similar criticisms from both viewers and animal welfare groups.

During 2017's celebrity spin-off series, Made in Chelsea star Ollie Locke, along with a fellow contestant Karen Danczuk, jumped onto the back of a crocodile and stabbed it through the back of its neck with a knife. 

Locke, however, looked shocked during the aftermath and mumbled saying 'I'm so sorry darling' and told the camera: 'I think that's one of the hardest things I've ever done in my entire life.'

But fans weren't impressed and said she showed utter lack of remorse. 

At the time, Alan Knight, of International Animal Rescue, said of the incident, “I feel it is totally unacceptable to kill or abuse animals for entertainment.”

Bear Grylls has faced numerous criticisms for the innocent killing of animals on the show. (Source: Getty)

The charity spokesperson claimed the animal “suffered unnecessarily”, as Locke would not have the right knowledge to kill the animal “humanely."

However, Channel 4 responded to the incident with:

“The premise of the series, in aid of Stand Up to Cancer, is to see if when stripped of all the conveniences of modern life, celebrities have what it takes to survive and feeding themselves is a fundamental part of this.

"Those on the island all received training on how to kill animals humanely and this was utilized properly in each instance."

Bear Grylls has also faced criticism from animal charity PETA who condemned the show’s “miserable celebrities and producers” after Olympian Iwan Thomas and former ‘Coronation Street’ actor Ryan Thomas killed a crocodile with a knife.

It also sparked outrage and complaints from media watchdog Ofcom.

The Island had also been criticized earlier when male contestants on the show accidentally killed and ate a rare species of crocodile. They killed an American crocodile mistaking it for a common caiman. 

In 2015, show bosses were accused of shipping in pigs for the contestants to slaughter. A scene from one episode saw three women who sneaked up on a sleeping pig and took it by surprise, killing it by plunging a knife into its neck.

Animal rights groups condemned the slaughter and the RSPCA told The Mail on Sunday: 'The RSPCA opposes practices that cause animals pain, suffering or death in the name of entertainment. 

'It's unacceptable and could easily cause great distress to the animals.' 

Meanwhile, Sir David has signed a mega-deal to host a show on conservation with Netflix.

He said: “Netflix wants me to do something on conservation and have asked me to do it, and I’ve said I would.

“There are certain things that the BBC can do and can’t do, and I can see some reasons why to do a programme on Netflix rather than the BBC.