The World's Worst Parents

There's no definitive guide book to parenthood. Working out the best ways to love and educate your children is part of the joy and challenge of raising the next generation.

But there can be few better examples of how not to raise children than these.

From the parents who have stuck their child to the wall with duct tape, to the man who allowed his young daughter to dress as a topless mermaid - and even helped her carry the costume - these parents are far from setting a good example.

This is where babies come from... This shocked infant looks horrified to learn the truth about the stork and the cabbage patch

Horror: A teething baby takes a bite into a giant snake - not realising it is putting its new teeth into a potential predator

Don't go! A woman crosses a level crossing with a pram as the light is on red. In the background a train can be seen leaving the station

Get 'em started young: This little girl is having her first taste of alcohol about 17-and-a-half years too early

Shock: A huge snake sits on top of a tiny baby as it lies on a bed in this sickening image

Into the raccoon's pen: This child is danged headfirst into a pen to feed a raccoon

Once this one turns 18, she won't be sticking around for long... Exasperated parents have found a novel way to stop this toddler getting into trouble

Other gaffes are downright dangerous. Someone please tell the mother who's allowed her little ones to stray beneath the woman twirling upside-down around a pole that these positions are hard to hold.

And the man teaching his daughter to shoot a pistol... Well, he perhaps ought not to be allowed near either a handgun or a youngster.

Many do not bode well for the future, like the father at a music festival who, while carrying his daughter on his shoulders, is taking a puff of a Looney Tunes-sized joint.

And the father who is giving his infant daughter her first taste of beer, when it looks like she'd prefer breast milk, ought really to go on a course.

Hitting the bottle: This youngster is given an early taste of manhood as he appears to knock back a can of beer

One of the family album: The chances are low of this child treasuring this picture of him with his scantily-clad parents on their wedding day

Hanging out: This poor little one looks bewildered as he is left dangling precariously from a tree branch by his clothing

One for you, one for mummy: She might think she can multi-task, but someone needs to tell this woman pushing a stroller while riding a segway across a road is a recipe for disaster

Mummy, where are your clothes? Motherhood obviously hasn't taken its toll on this woman's body, and she wants the world to know

Lick it clean: A child eats cake mix off a whisk - while it still appears to be plugged in

Open wide: A man fooling around pretends to bite into a sandwich with a sleeping baby inside

Don't fall! These toddlers have strayed dangerous close to the pole just as the woman riding it moves into a position that looks devilishly hard to hold

Lesson she won't forget... But shouldn't this dad be teaching his child not to touch electric fences?

Babe in arms: But we're pretty sure the second amendment doesn't extend to pre-schoolers

Very safe: From Social Services, at least, as this woman has taken the precaution of covering her face before this snap was taken

He's not a briefcase: But this man's novel method of carrying his son is just as convenient

Breast enlargement: A child with something stuffed inside her top in this photo which will infuriate campaigners

My first porn video: A child clutches a copy of an adult film as she is held by a grinning adult

Martial arts: This toddler is dangled upside down - but remarkably still appears to be smiling

Into the lion's den: A child who looks terrified poses for a picture next to a lion

Age appropriate: This father seems to see nothing wrong with helping his daughter to show off the assets of her risque mermaid's outfit

Baby see, baby do: This youngster already has the pose of a seasoned smoker

Good times at the festival: Depending on which way the wind is blowing, we might soon have a very sleepy toddler on our hands

This is just frightening: And this poor little one doesn't look too pleased to be jammed in the microwave either

BBQ baby: Please get him off there! This child is left on a barbecue - although it is switched off

I'm outta here: Perhaps terrified of what might be coming next, this little trike rider from somewhere in the Far-East is striking out on his own