What has birds teetering on the edge of existence more than anything is loss of habitat; there are 269 bird species in the Americas ranked as critically endangered or endangered. This is the driving force behind the creation of ABC's Latin American Bird Reserve Network several years ago. From coastal flats to cloud forests, the network spans 14 countries, 75 reserves, and almost one million acres of habitat. Our approach is “quality over quantity”: amassing acreage is not our goal. Rather, we focus on protecting the places where species are relying on a single remaining site, or are rapidly heading in that direction. Will you help us expand the network for the most endangered birds?
ABC and our partners are constantly on the lookout for ways to establish new reserves or expand existing ones. In 2018 we have an exciting opportunity to do both. We are kicking off the new year with a goal of raising $50,000 from now until the end of February to help partners buy land in two keys areas to protect the Blue-throated Macaw in Bolivia and the Long-whiskered Owlet in Peru.
A Highway Runs Through It
In 2005, the creation of the Abra Patricia Reserve came just in the nick of time—a recently completed highway traversing the Amazonas region of northern Peru threatened to bring waves of new settlements and development. And indeed it did. Today this area is still experiencing some of the fastest deforestation rates in the country. We are acting fast to buffer Abra Patricia from the highway and prevent access for illegal activities such as logging and poaching of wildlife.
Right now we have a unique opportunity to buy three properties totaling 173 acres to better secure the reserve and improve habitat connectivity. Will you donate today and help us protect Abra Patricia and its abundant bird life, including the endangered Ochre-fronted Antpitta and Long-whiskered Owlet?
E3: Enigmatic, Endemic, and Endangered
The tiny Long-whiskered Owlet, measuring only about five inches in length, is so distinctive that scientists placed it in its own genus, Xenoglaux, meaning "strange owl." First discovered in 1976, it remained elusive until several were spotted in 2007 at the Abra Patricia Reserve, where ABC and partner Asociación Ecosistemas Andinos (ECOAN) now protect more than 25,000 acres of habitat. Your help today will help ABC keep this reserve safe and intact.
The bird diversity is among the highest on Earth at Abra Patricia. It is particularly famous for its many endemic and enigmatic species. In addition to the owlet there is the Ochre-fronted Antpitta, Johnson's Tody-Flycatcher, Royal Sunangel, and Bar-winged Wood-Wren. Spectacled Bears and the critically endangered Yellow-tailed Woolly Monkey also rely on this magnificent protected area!
Esperancita – “a little bit of hope” – for the Blue-throated Macaw
The Blue-throated Macaw is a tale of two populations. Within the range of this critically endangered and endemic species in Bolivia, the continuous growth of a major city effectively fragmented the population into north and south. In the north, ABC helped partner Asociación Armonía establish the Blue-Throated Macaw Reserve to protect the most critical foraging and roosting sites for the species. In the south, however, no such protection exists. Until now. This year we have the chance to create a second reserve, but it will not be possible without your support.
The proposed reserve of nearly 1,700 acres is named “Esperancita,” which means “a little bit of hope“: an appropriate name for a place that contains the most important breeding area for the southern population of the macaws. Esperancita is also the location of Armonía's long-running nest box program, which has fledged 45 Blue-throated Macaw chicks since 2005, and last year the first pair of nest-box fledged macaws returned to breed there! But now the landowner wants to sell the property, putting the entire program in jeopardy if we cannot purchase the land and keep hope alive for this species.
Help ABC Expand the Latin American Bird Reserve Network
The Latin American Bird Reserve Network is successful thanks to an extraordinary collaboration between conservation groups, government agencies, and you, our supporters. Your gift today will help ABC and our partners protect an additional 1,855 acres in Peru and Bolivia for some of the most endangered species in the western hemisphere.
American Bird Conservancy is the Western Hemisphere’s bird conservation specialist—the only organization with a single and steadfast commitment to achieving conservation results for native birds and their habitats throughout the Americas. With a focus on efficiency and working in partnership, we take on the toughest problems facing birds today, innovating and building on sound science to halt extinctions, protect habitats, eliminate threats, and build capacity for bird conservation.
Asociación Armonía is Bolivia’s premier bird conservation organization. From the Andes to the Amazon, we work to halt bird extinctions, conserve biodiversity, protect vital ecological systems and alleviate poverty through sustainable livelihoods provided by healthy ecosystem services. We contribute significantly to improve the knowledge about Bolivia’s bird diversity and conservation priorities, and conduct effective education initiatives to help develop a conservationist culture among Bolivians.
ECOAN (Asociacion Ecosistemas Andinos) works to involve local communities in the preservation of biodiversity by promoting the sustainable use of natural resources and thus conserving flora, fauna, and natural ecosystems in Peru.