I'm A Celebrity 2012 blasted for "disrespecting" animals

Helen

I'm A Celebrity bosses have been blasted by wildlife experts for disrespecting the bugs they use in the show's famous bushtucker trials.

This year has once again see an array of Aussie animals brought in to freak out the celebs, from the usual spiders, snakes and cockroaches to even an ostrich.

Campers have had to eat camel toe and stick insect sticky buns in order to win food for camp.

But the BBC's Chris Packham has hit out at the show.

Speaking to the Daily Mirror, he said: "I dread this time of year because I know I’m going to feel depressed and angry.

"You see myself and my many colleagues in television and conservation have been working hard to increase everyone’s appreciation of wildlife, their love for all life, their understanding of its beauty and of the need to conserve it.

"We don’t just go for the cute and cuddly, we champion the ugly and unpopular too and I work really hard to win new audiences over to the wonder and real value of nature.

"Then I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here rears its horrible head. "

The Autumnwatch presenter blasted the "idiotic, out-dated and puerile abuse of animals" he claimed took place on the ITV1 series.

He added: "Why not flog, birch, tar and feather or hang, draw and quarter the contestants as well?"

Chris complained: "These people are never in any real danger – the tiny crocodiles have their mouths gagged, the spiders have their fangs covered or removed, the snakes are non-venomous and the whole area has been drenched in insecticide so the poor things don’t get too pestered by biting insects.

"It’s a pathetic farce."

And, just in case it wasn't clear, he added: "For me it’s a massive turn–off, I won't be watching."

In a statement, ITV said it took animal welfare very seriously and expert handlers were there at all times during trials.

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