Temples, Birds and Tourists
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Letter to the Malta Independent
April 28, 2001

Of megalith temples, birds and tourists

In August last year I introduced the Malta Tourist Action to the public, which informs the tourists about hunting and trapping in Malta and gives them the opportunity of showing their disapproval for this "sport" by sending a postcard to the Prime Minister.

Hunters and trappers accused me of harming the tourist industry.

Now, there could be indications that hunters and trappers vandalised the unique historical monument of Mnajdra, so now it is obvious who is really harming the tourist industry!

The incomparable prehistoric temples are not our only national heritage - the migratory birds are as well. Not only the matchless temples are a magnet for the tourists and should be protected at all costs; the migratory birds can become an attraction for tourists.

Reducing and finally abolishing hunting and trapping in Malta would give a boost to tourism in autumn and spring. Thousands of European bird watchers and ecotourists could be attracted.

That this works very successfully is proved by other regions in Europe, for example in the mud-flats of Germany, where many people go only to observe the abundance of birdlife.

Hopefully, this terrible vandalism committed on our temples will help develop into a new appreciation of our heritage and arouse awareness of the ecological value of the birds in the Maltese Islands.

By the way, Malta Tourist Action is growing. Over 17,000 e-mails from around the world, as well as many protest letters, have been sent to the Prime Minister. There are similar other actions run by bird lovers in Great Britain and Germany.

David Camilleri

New York



Eurobirder/Proact-Malta David Conlin 2001