In the October issue I described the situation of some species, such as Brazil’s Grey-breasted Conure, Ecuador’s Yellow-faced Parrotlet and Bolivia’s Blue-throated Macaw that have been reduced to populations of fewer than 1,000 individuals due to trapping for the pet trade, mostly illegal. Another species in this category is a cockatoo, which many of us can remember being imported. For example, between 1983 and 1989 more than 350 wild-caught Philippine Cockatoos entered the UK (Cites Trade Database), and many more followed. That number is about one third of the population known to exist today in their natural habitat.
Philippine Cockatoo or Red-vented Cockatoo (Cacatua haematuropygia)
IUCN Critically Endangered 1994 (1988 Threatened).
Birdlife: 650-1,120 individuals, roughly equivalent to 430-750 mature individuals.
Populations increasing or declining, according to the island inhabited.
Thefts of chicks from nest for the illegal pet trade and deforestation has caused a huge overall population decline, since at least the 1980s. Since 1998 Peter and Indira Widmann have worked tirelessly to save this beautiful cockatoo from extinction, especially to prevent illegal trade. They are directors of the Philippine Cockatoo Conservation Program and co-founders of the Katala Foundation (KFI). They also established the Katala Institute for Ecology and Biodiversity Conservation. This promotes awareness of the need to protect the cockatoo (the Katala) populations and its habitat. Those involved in saving this species in the Philippines do not have an easy task and they deserve our congratulations for what has been achieved so far, with the financial help of Loro Parque Fundacion, the German organisation ZGAP and Chester Zoo, among others. The first and last mentioned organisations successfully reproduce this cockatoo.
Captive breeding: Worldwide, only a few breeders and zoos, with a true commitment to the species, have been consistently successful. Despite the large numbers exported, there are few reproducing pairs, which is highly regrettable. It is well-known that a major cause of failure was caused by private breeders who tried to pair young females with mature males. This almost always resulted in the death of the precious female.
Night Parrot (Pezoporus occidentalis)
IUCN Endangered 2012 (previously Critically Endangered).
BirdLife International population estimate: 50-250 adult individuals.
Habitat loss has been the major cause of the decline of the Night Parrot. Very few people have ever seen one. What does it look like? Imagine a parakeet slightly larger than a wild budgerigar with cryptic, intricately marked yellow-green and black plumage, and huge dark eyes, and with a more horizontal than upright pose – then this is it. And add an unusually long tail.
Many parrot species are active at night, but only the Kakapo and the Night Parrot are truly nocturnal, making them extremely difficult to observe. The Night Parrot almost entered the realms of mythical creatures. It was discovered by Europeans in 1845, and for decades was believed to be extinct. Its unique, terrestrial, nocturnal and possibly nomadic life style had made it a mystery and there was much speculation about its fate. Did it still exist?
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Parrot language issue
Puerto Rico’s endangered parrots are facing a new threat to their survival – their strange squawks. In a phenomenon never seen before, Puerto Rican parrots bred in captivity, with a view to being released into the wild, were communicating with a different dialect to the wild populations.
Regent parrots thriving in SA wetland
Passion drips from Tim Field’s every word when he speaks about eastern Regent Parrots. The wetland manager at Banrock Station in South Australia is, it’s fair to say, smitten with these striking birds. “September and October is Regent Parrot survey time,” Tim says, “So we’re up well before dawn to make sure we’re at the wetland’s to track the fly-in, fly-out breeding population.”
Landmark event for Philippine Cockatoo
Exciting news has recently arrived of a landmark event in the Philippine Cockatoo Conservation Program (PCCP), the long-term endeavour to bring about the recovery of this ‘Critically Endangered’ species endemic to the Philippines. For the first time ever, a Philippine Cockatoo rescued from the wild, and subsequently released back to its original site, has been recorded to breed and produce a healthy hatchling. Such rescue and release to augment the wild population is just one of a raft of conservation measures conducted by the PCCP and supported by the Loro Parque Fundación over many years.
Increasing Knowledge of the Most Endangered Parrots
Fifty years ago our knowledge of the status of parrots in the wild was limited. Few parrot species were known to be in danger of extinction and these were mainly Amazona parrots which were confined to small islands. At that time very few species had been studied in the wild.
Coronavirus threat to PNG's animal rescue centre
Port Moresby is the capital of Papua New Guinea and is home to its unique animal rescue centre that is now facing the threat of the Covid-19 pandemic, and could be shut down. Papua New Guinea is the most populous nation in Melanesia and faces a potentially devastating wave of Covid-19 infections.
Cucurbitaceae enrichment for our parrots
The group of cucurbitaceae is the one that includes cucumbers and pumpkins. Climbing or creeping plants that usually cover large areas to produce fruits that usually accumulate a lot of water. In nature, these plants defend themselves with a very bitter substance called cucurbitacin.
Rare macaw refuge destroyed
A rare bird sanctuary in Brazil, which is home to 15 per cent of the world’s population of Hyacinth and Lear’s Macaws, has been destroyed by fires, and there are now fears for the survival of these blue macaws. “It is very sad to see decades of my family’s work, years taking care and preserving nature, for this to happen,” said Ana Maria Barreto, owner of the São Francisco do Perigara, a cattle ranch and bird sanctuary of more than 61,000 acres in Mato Grosso state.
The value of animals
Children at a nursery and day care facility were delighted to receive a visit from some very special guests. Learning Land in Workington has a range of animals drop by, as part of an educational encounter paid for by the Co-op. The store has been working with animal specialists, Pet Encounter Cumbria, based in Workington, to deliver therapeutic and educational visits to children and the elderly.
Complete Psittacine Subtle Secrets for Feeding Psittacines – and Getting them to Eat
I have been daily feeding psittacines for 40 years now and there have been times in the past when I felt that was all I did each day – pets, breeders, babies, the birds at the shoppe in Santa Fe. The good news is this has taught me a whole lot about how to do it. And across all species groups, there are some really good guidelines for what to feed, when to feed, and how to make sure your parrots are actually consuming what you are giving them.
Calabash for parrots
Different types of calabash has grown this year very well within our organic crops and a big advantage for our parrots that are relishing every moment during this season.
As tough as they come
When seeing red isn’t a bad thing
Sharks face extinction threat while tunas bounce back
Overall risk rising at alarming rate, says expert; 28% of 1.38 lakh species at risk of vanishing forever; but in ray of hope, 4 fish species pulled back from the brink
BITTU SAHGALSEEKING SANCTUARY
In kinship with wildlife, with nature, with the air we breathe Bittu Sahgal shares his lifetime’s camaraderie with the environment
Elvira Rat - Can We Reverse the Disturbing Decline in Its Population?
Rats! Someone out there needs a bit of help. Is there a Pied Piper who can reverse the disappearance of a rodent? The Elvira rat needs a little magic to help it survive, says Benita Sen.
समुद्री प्रजातियों पर विलुप्ति का संकट
शोधकर्ताओं ने पहली बार वैश्विक मूल्यांकन किया,57 फीसदी प्रजातियां सबसे अधिक खतरे में पाई गईं
Raptors in RESIDENCE
The crowned eagles of the African rainforest don’t mind life among people. In Durban, South Africa, these raptors can be watched right from the living room.
Synonymous with indulgent excess, caviar is the new starlet of sustainability
The next step: black gold produced globally without killing sturgeon.
Global seafood consumption has quadrupled over the past 50 years and interest in environmentally conscious fish choices has grown. But which types of seafood are sustainable and how can you be certain? We take a look.
Conservation Efforts in Himachal Pradesh