A Canadian TV presenter who shot and killed a mountain lion in Alberta, Canada, is facing a backlash from animal rights activists.

Steve Ecklund's hunt of the mountain lion was legal but Peta (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) has described him as "a small person with deep-seated insecurities", according to the Daily Mail.

Ecklund is the co-host of a hunting programme called The Edge. He has been pictured with dead lions, black bears and rams on his own Facebook page.

The UK organisation Hunt Saboteurs has condemned Ecklund's actions. "Whether legal or illegal, and whatever country it occurs in, hunting for sport is morally reprehensible and has no place in so called civilised society," spokesperson Lee Moon told the Mirror.

"Links between animal and human abuse are well documented and it's beyond our comprehension what makes people think this kind of barbaric act is deemed acceptable.

"When the authorities don't act it's no wonder that people take matters into their own hands and protect hunted animals themselves."

After posting photos of the dead mountain lion alongside two friends and two beagles, Ecklund uploaded images of the animal's organs split open. The following day, he posted a status update mocking the negative feedback he had received.

"If you can guess what post has 900 likes, 450 comments, 13 confirmed death threats, 754 swear words and one very happy hunter in it....... I will enter your name into the draw for the new cougar cook book, filled with mouth water recipes for your next mountain lion hunt," he wrote alongside laughing emojis.

The incident drew comparisons with American dentist Walter Palmer who paid $50,000 to hunt and kill Cecil the lion in Zimbabwe. Palmer became the subject of an intense online hate campaign after posing with the dead lion.