An open letter to the American Museum of Natural History

Subject: An open letter to the American Museum of Natural History
From: Colin Clark
Date: 11 Oct 2015

Dear Sir/Madam

I think Chris Filardi should be fired for the killing of a rare bird on Guadalcanal. In case this is not possible, you, as a scientific and leading institution in biodiversity, should apologize for his actions, and amend your policy, publicly, to disclude the killing of animals, in the name of science. If you want to study animals in the wild, that is one thing, but killing them and reducing their population, even by one, is anathema to their conservation - and certainly no way to behave as peers and educators of the next generation of scientists. You should be ashamed!

I have traveled all over the world, and visited many museums who have, on display, lots of taxidermy. In fact, it is difficult to see some animals left in the wild (e.g. The Wattled Umbrellabird), when, conversely, it is EASY to see them dead and stuffed in a museum. You MUST see the illogic and immorality of this situation?

The moustached kingfisher deserves protection, particularly in the form of educating the land owners at the site, about the bird's environmental importance and right to exist as a species. How is Mr. Filardi's actions supposed to do that? Your tacit support of these actions are now the subject of widespread ridicule and anger, and I, as a member of the public, expect an appropriate response.

I believe the actions of Mr Filardi were thoughtless and myopic at best - downright selfish and immoral at worst. Please apologize, and publicly dissuade your scientists from killing animals - protect animals and teach others to respect the natural world around us. It is all we really have.

Sincerely yours,

Colin Clark