Photo of Man Surfing on Crocodile Down River Prompts Outrage

Animal rights organisation PETA has criticised an Australian man for an image that appeared to show him surfing on top of a giant crocodile.

The picture, which was captioned the "Most Aussie photo I have" was uploaded to Reddit on May 16, but has been removed from the site just 24 hours later.

Screenshots saved from Reddit and posted on several other social media sites showed a barefoot man standing on top of a crocodile while wearing a high-vis jacket.

The photo showed the man holding one end of a rope in his hand with the other tied to the crocodile's jaw, as his friends were situated in a boat nearby.

The image caused a stir on Reddit after being uploaded on Sunday, with many commentators joking about the lack of safety precautions, with one user writing: "Glad he was wearing hi vis.. you know for safety."

Other users praised the image, with one writing: "This should be in a museum" as another added: "You know for sure that the last thing he said was 'Hold my beer.'"

However, despite the amused reactions on Reddit, PETA released a statement later in the day criticising the stunt.

In a statement to News.com.au, PETA spokesperson Emily Rice wrote: "If this stunt is the 'most Aussie thing ever,' we should be ashamed.

"Animals are not surfboards, and we should no more be applauding a person who 'surfs' on a crocodile than we should applaud jockeys who whip horses or marine park trainers who torment dolphins."

The spokesperson added: "Native wildlife habitats are already under threat, thanks to human lust for animal flesh and the dire environmental effects of animal agriculture.

"The last thing Australian animals need is also to be stood on by grown men looking for attention."

The legitimacy of the photo was also questioned by some, as Crocodile Safety Australia's Adam Britton told Daily Mail Australia that the incident was unlikely to be possible with a live crocodile.

"It seems extraordinarily unlikely to be able to pull this off as depicted, crocs typically spin around and bite anything touching their back like this, and the guy would be in the water," he said on Sunday.

"It's much more likely to be digital manipulation, or even faked as a set up," Britton added.

The image is the latest crocodile related incident in Australia, as late last month a large crocodile jumped onto a boat with four people onboard in Kakadu National Park, which is located in the country's Northern Territory.

A 32-year-old man onboard the boat at the time of the rare attack was bitten by the crocodile, but was later only treated for minor injuries.

Newsweek has contacted PETA and Britton for comment.

crocodile australia peta condemmed reddit
Rocky the Crocodile at Wild Life Sydney Zoo as he is fed a Christmas turkey on December 21, 2017 in Sydney, Australia. A picture of a man appearing to surf on top of a crocodile was uploaded to Reddit on May 16, but has since been removed. James D. Morgan/Getty Images