The actress daughter of late conservationist Steve Irwin is facing a backlash after partnering with controversial theme park SeaWorld for a new campaign.
Following the 2013 release of documentary "Blackfish," a film which exposed the bleak conditions faced by killer whales in captivity, a storm of negative publicity, boycotts and protests have been staged against SeaWorld bosses.
Despite the negative publicity, the 15 year old announced on Thursday that she will front a new promotional drive geared towards children for the theme park.
She said, "I'm so excited to be carrying on in Dad's footsteps and making sure that everything he worked so hard for continues for the generations to come."
"That's why I'm thrilled to be empowering kids. I'm thrilled to be partnered up with SeaWorld. Thrilled to be part of this new project Generation Nature and just encouraging kids to change the world."
The venture has attracted the ire of animals rights campaigners, including bosses at People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA).
A statement from a PETA representative reads: "The Irwin family has been exploiting animals for years, so it comes as no surprise that Bindi has agreed to become SeaWorld’s latest shill."
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"But plastering her face on SeaWorld’s website won’t cover up the fact that orcas, dolphins, and other animals are suffering in SeaWorld's tiny tanks after being ripped from their families. What millions have realized -- through PETA's massive campaign and the hit documentary 'Blackfish -- is that SeaWorld is no place for anyone who truly cares about animals."
Musicians including Willie Nelson, Cheap Trick and Heart have all recently canceled their gigs at the park's 2014 Bands, Brews and BBQ concert series.
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