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  • This is terrible    March 26 
Viewers disgusted with animal abuse on Call of the Wildman
Screenshot/Mother Jones
Screenshot/Mother Jones

Think Animal Planet is all cuddly koala bears and rangers tracing bear tracks? Well, a Mother Jones investigation reveals the network's practices are anything but warm and fuzzy.

Through a 7-month investigation, Mother Jones uncovered photographs from behind the scenes of Animal Planet's most popular reality show, Call of the Wildman. The show, which draws over 1 million viewers per week, features "The Turtleman," a self-proclaimed "legend" who goes into people's homes and businesses to "rescue" problem animals.

But the Mother Jones investigation shows that Call of the Wildman has done more harm than rescuing. These abuses include everything from drugging animals, caging them for hours, and leaving newborns so dehydrated and malnourished that they die. One of the photos that elicited a swarm of viewer outrage pictures a coyote shoved in a cramped cage. The Mother Jones article states, "by the time of the shoot, according to two people who worked on the production, the coyote was 'sick and unresponsive' and had to be replaced."

Disturbed viewers plastered these images on social media, vowing to stop watching Animal Planet programing. "The Turtleman" may be a "legend," but it looks like he's gaining a new reputation for himself and the network.

- - Kaitlin Roberts 
 
 
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