MIRI (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Images on social media showing a group of people gleefully posing while in the process of slaughtering a giant freshwater stingray has sparked anger among nature lovers.
The Star received the photos of the cruel act said to have happened somewhere in Lundu district in southern Sarawak.
The pictures showed several men thrusting hooks into a huge stingray that filled the size of the whole boat.
The men were seen stepping on the stingray with one holding a butcher knife. The other pictures showed the men posing for photos by laying down on the creature.
Giant freshwater stingrays are endangered. They live hiding at the bottom of the rivers of South-east Asia and can grow as big as a small car.
The stingray weighed at least 280kg and measured at least 4m long from head to tail.
"The stingray was caught by some local Sarawak fishermen at Muara Sungai Lundu in Lundu district on Thursday afternoon," said the informant.
Nature lovers expressed outrage over its killing.
Dr Uma Devi, who is a keen advocate of kindness towards animals and the ecosystem, said the cruel act was sickening.
"Not only are they cruelly causing suffering to the stingray, but they are even posing for photos.
"Is there anything to be proud of for committing such inhumane acts?" she asked.
An Internet user, Enjila, questioned the need to kill these gentle giants of the rivers and the seas.
"So sad to see the blatant and senseless killing of such beautiful creatures that should be left alone," she said.
The Star has forwarded the pictures and information to the Sarawak Forestry Corporation, Sarawak Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and Malaysian Nature Society in the state.