Tess Thompson Talley, who lives in Kentucky, posted the images of herself with the animal taken during a hunting trip to South Africa last year.
“Prayers for my once in a lifetime dream hunt came true today,” Ms Talley, 37, wrote. “Spotted this rare black giraffe bull and stalked him for quite awhile. I knew it was the one. He was over 18 years old, 4,000 lbs and was blessed to be able to get 2,000 lbs of meat from him.”
Ms Talley’s images seem to have gone largely unnoticed until they were recently posted by Africa Digest, a current Twitter handle that links to a news site, africlandpost.com, that appears not to have been updated for two years.
“White American savage who is partly a neanderthal comes to Africa and shoots down a very rare black giraffe courtesy of South Africa stupidity. Her name is Tess Thompson Talley. Please share,” read the post by Africa Digest.
“If our so called governments can’t care for our wildlife then its time we stand up and responsibility of our continent, lands, resources and wildlife....share share share! and lets have a united voice against pillage of Africa, it’s the only home we have.”
The photographs of Ms Talley with the animal sparked outrage on social media.
Actress and activist Debra Messing said Ms Talley was “a disgusting, vile, amoral, heartless, selfish murderer”.
“With joy in her black heart and a beaming smile she lies next to the dead carcass of a *rare* black giraffe in South Africa. Giraffes are the epitome of gentle giants,” she said.
“They glide across the plains, like liquid; awe inspiring creatures who spend their days eating leaves and caring for their young. How DARE she.”
Ricky Gervais, who frequently tweets in defence of animal rights said giraffes were “now on the ‘red list' of endangerment due to a 40 per cent decline over the last 25 years”.
“They could become extinct,” he said. “Gone forever. And still, we allow spoilt c**** to pay money to shoot them with a bow and arrow for fun.”
Lisa Lange, a senior vice president with People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, said: "This woman's inability to relate to another living being, to reduce this magnificent wild animal to a corpse, and gloat over her ability to kill, then saying she is involved in “conservation” is like saying that killing some humans will solve world hunger."
Ms Talley could not he immediately contacted for comment. However, in a statement to Fox News she defended her actions.
“The giraffe I hunted was the South African sub-species of giraffe. The numbers of this sub-species is actually increasing due, in part, to hunters and conservation efforts paid for in large part by big game hunting,” she said.
“The breed is not rare in any way other than it was very old. Giraffes get darker with age.”
She added: “This is called conservation through game management.”
“The giraffe in the photo is of the South African species Giraffa giraffe, which are not rare – they are increasing in the wild,” Julian Fennessy, co-founder of the Giraffe Conservation Foundation, told Yahoo Lifestyle. “Legal hunting of giraffe is not a reason for their decline, despite the moral and ethical side of it which is a different story.”
Nikki Tate, a 27-year-old lawyer and “ethical hunter” from Texas, triggered outrage and received death threats last year, after she posted pictures with her kills. She also claimed she received many messages of support.
In 2015, Minnesota dentist Walter Palmer was internationally scorned after killing the celebrated Cecil the Lion near a national park in Zimbabwe.
“I get that hunting is not for everyone. That’s what makes this world great is the differences. But to make threats to anyone because they don’t believe the way you do is completely unacceptable,” Ms Talley said.
“If it was any other belief that was different, threats and insults would be deemed hideous. However, for some reason it is OK to act this way because it’s hunting.”