A New Zealand school which held a best dressed dead possum competition is defending the event which has been labelled "sick".
Photos from the Uruti School competition held on Tuesday in Taranaki, show a skinned possum dressed as a boxer, some in baby clothes and two relaxing on mini beach towels. Another photo shows a young girl holding a dead possum dressed up as a bride.
Pauline Sutton, principal of Uruti School which is about 40km north of New Plymouth, has defended the event and says feedback has all been positive. "When people die, don't we dress them up?" she said. It is the first time the school has held a dress-up possum competition and Ms Sutton says it may not be the last.
However, SPCA spokeswoman Jackie Poles-Smith says the competition is disappointing. "The SPCA's focus is on teaching children respect and empathy for animals and they didn't do that," she said. "Animals deserve respect even after death."
There's a photo galley here.