I’m A Celeb slammed by RSPCA after show’s contestants ‘crush’ live animals

I'm A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! has run into trouble after just 48 hours for its treatment of critters and bugs.

The RSPCA urged the show's bosses not to use live beasts in the Bushtucker Trials after the series moved from Australia to Wales.

But on Sunday, campmates including Bev Callard took part in the Gates To Hell trial in which cockroaches, mealworms, crickets and maggots were dropped on them.

Then last night Shane Richie and Jordan North faced The Viper Vault where they had snakes crawling all over them.

The RSPCA said yesterday: "Since I'm a Celebrity first aired, animals have been dropped, thrown, handled roughly, crushed, chased, scared by contestants and prevented from escaping from stressful experiences.

"The show's potential to prompt people to try and copy the Bushtucker Trials at home for entertainment is also worrying.

"We feel that deliberately portraying certain species as nasty or frightening or as objects that can be used purely for entertainment rather than sentient, living creatures sends out totally the wrong message."

The RSPCA said it was pleased that the show's bosses got in touch when planning the series in Wales, but was disappointed when they said they would continue to use animals in the trials.

It urged viewers to complain to the TV watchdog Ofcom or ITV if they believed animals were "suffering or distressed."

A spokesman for I'm A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! said: "Im A Celebrity complies with animal welfare law concerning the use of animals and we are proud of our exemplary production practices."

This year, ITV were forced to make alternative plans when the coronavirus pandemic shut the world off, meaning they couldn't film at the regular location on Australia's Gold Coast.

Bosses made the decision to transfer the show to North Wales, with contestants being braced for the infamous British weather.

I'm A Celebrity returns to ITV at 9pm.

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