Australian MP ate 'tasty' fried elephant

An elephant helps a calf  up a slope after fording the Ewaso Nyiro river in Kenya's Samburu Game Reserve.

Story highlights

  • Australian politician boasts to parliament that he ate elephant he shot on hunting trip to Africa
  • MP Robert Borsak claims meat was tasty, but critics call his act "disgusting"

(CNN)First he shot and killed an elephant in Africa. Then he fried it in butter and ate it.

But don't ask Australian lawmaker and proud huntsman Robert Borsak for any apologies, despite the backlash he's getting for admitting it to parliament.
    "What do you think happens to elephant carcasses that are killed under license?" Borsak, a member of parliament of the Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party (SFF), asked CNN. "They are the property of the traditional owners, they value the meat as one of their only sources of protein."
    He was speaking to parliament in New South Wales about animal rights Tuesday night when Green Party MP Jeremy Buckingham interrupted him, asking if he ate the dead elephant pictured with him in a hunting photo.
    Borsak said he did, and later confirmed to CNN that he found it tasty.
    The politician says he ate one meal of cooked elephant, but then ate more "mostly as biltong for a few days afterwards whilst hunting." Biltong is a type of dried cured meat, similar to jerky.
    Buckingham took to Twitter, calling the act "disgusting."
    But Borsak fired back on social media, showing a photo of Buckingham chowing down on Borsak's venison sausages at a parliamentary barbeque.
    Animal rights groups such as the UK's Labour Animal Welfare Society have been retweeting the news, but Borsak's hunting supporters are standing behind him.
    The controversy over legal elephant trophy hunting has raged for many years, with countries such as Zimbabwe, Tanzania, South Africa and Mozambique allowing controlled hunts.
    The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Fauna and Flora (CITES) allows several African countries to legally export hundreds of ivory tusks annually.
    But due to poaching, wildlife protection group WildAid estimates 33,000 elephants are killed each year.