A Nanoose Bay woman has been crowned the 2016 "Extreme Huntress," earning the title in a controversial American reality show featuring female hunters.
Shannon Lansdowne beat out five other female finalists pitted against one another to prove their hunting, shooting and tracking skills at a Texas ranch. The competition was filmed and aired online starting in October.
"If mom goes hunting so will her children," reads the Extreme Huntress website describing the show.
"The Extreme Huntress Competition continues to set the bar for serious outdoors women, while at the same time providing positive role models for women who are new to hunting, shooting and other traditional outdoor sports."
Women from all around the world submitted 500-word essays describing "why they are the most hardcore Extreme Huntress." A panel of six celebrity judges scored the essays and determined the top 20 finalists, then the essays were posted on the Extreme Huntress website and a public vote determined the six finalists who travelled to the 777 Ranch in Texas for a head-to-head competition. The winner was determined based on outdoor skills, hunting and their total amount of online votes.
Animal rights groups have voiced concern over the content of the show — some calling it "sadistic" and "unhinged."
Lansdowne, a self proclaimed "conservationist" according to her Facebook page, did not respond to questions from The NEWS by press time on Wednesday.
However, she posted on Facebook in response to her win: "I am so honoured to be the one to bring the win home to B.C. and Canada. I am looking forward to hold (sic) a platform to help promote a hunting lifestyle to the world."
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) senior director Colleen O'Brien said it's disgusting to see the heartless self congratulations over ending animals' lives for entertainment.
"Extreme Huntress shows women smiling over the corpses of animals who wanted nothing more than to be able to go about their business and be left in peace," O'Brien told
The NEWS in an e-mail Tuesday.
"We hope women — and particularly mothers — will be sensitive to the fact that by killing healthy 'trophy animals' to mount on their walls, hunters are also potentially making orphans of juvenile animals who are left to fend for themselves."
The NEWS was not able to get details on exactly what Lansdowne killed in the final of the competition.
In Lansdowne's online biography, she explains she grew up as an outfitter's daughter on the central coast of British Columbia.
"My hunting and guiding skills were derived from my younger years of paying close attention to my father, our guides and many hunters," she writes. "I learnt (sic) gun handling and field dressing around the same time I learnt (sic) how to read. To me hunting and guiding is second nature, it is who I am and where I hold the most knowledge and confidence."
Last October, Insights West conducted a poll which found 91 per cent of British Columbians oppose hunting animals for sport. Only seven per cent said they supported trophy hunting.
However, according to the data, a large majority of B.C. residents support eating meat (85 per cent) and hunting animals for meat (73 per cent).
"For British Columbians... there is a clear distinction between hunting for food and hunting for sport," said Mario Canseco, vice president of public affairs at Insights West. "Few residents are actually in favour of trophy hunting, even in the rural areas."
Results from this Insights West poll are based on an online study conducted from September 18 to September 21, 2015, among 1,003 adult British Columbians. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region. The margin of error — which measures sample variability — is +/- 3.1 percentage points.
The Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations develops angling, hunting and trapping relations on a two year cycle. They are currently looking for feedback and comments on proposed changes to the 2016-2018 Hunting and Trapping Regulations. The ministry will be open to public input until Jan. 31.
The key drivers for regulatory change in angling, hunting and trapping regulations include: regulation and simplification, harmonization or regulations within and between regions, increasing hunting and trapping opportunity and program delivery within existing resources. For more information or to province input visit http://apps.nrs.gov.bc.ca/pub/ahte/.