WORLDTWITCH.com Home Page - Finding Rare Birds Around the World [Logo by Michael O'Clery] Americas | Asia | Australasia & Pacific | Africa & Middle East | Tours & Lodges | Optics | Books | Advanced Search

Site Map

Links

Sounds

New

Brazil

Thailand

Malaysia

Belize

Costa Rica

Galápagos

Vietnam

Trip Advice

Books World

Books Americas

Books Asia

Books Aus/NZ

Books Africa

Books Europe & Middle East

Feeders

Yahoo! Groups & Mailing Lists

FAQs

About

Contact

The Last Spix's Macaw Cyanopsitta Spixii Disappears from the Wild

17 July 2002: IBAMA dissolves the Spix's Macaw Recovery Committee. Full text below.

11 January 2002: "Battle of the Bird Breeders: The Spix's Macaw is on the brink of extinction. But the bird's fate is in danger of being sidelined by the warring factions competing to save it." By Giles Whittell, The Times.

"Saga of Spix's Macaw" by Ian Hinze. BBC Wildlife 19(10): 42-43 (October 2001).

Spix's Macaw listed as extinct by IBAMA. O Estado de São Paulo, 7 February 2001.

Listen to calls of Spix's Macaw

To hear a simulated "flock", open this sound file (same tape) in a second window with the first is running. From Projeto Ararinha Azul

30 December 2000, O Estado de São Paulo: The last Spix's Macaw is still missing.

For continuing coverage, see The Blue Macaws website.

December 1, 2000, Brasília - The Brazilian Institute for the Environment and Natural Renewable Resources (IBAMA) has informed the conservation community that the last known wild Spix's Macaw (Cyanopsitta spixii) has disappeared. The Spix's Macaw (also known as the Little Blue Macaw) is considered one of the world's most endangered species. Until its disappearance, only one remaining male was known to exist in the wild - only in one small arid region of savanna scrubland in Northeastern Brazil known as the “caatinga”. It is estimated that the last Spix's Macaw is approximately 19 years of age, so there is great fear that he might have succumbed to a predator or died of an age related illness. He had been observed avoiding hawks in the past year. It is not known how long this species lives in the wild. But, if its disappearance is confirmed, the Spix's Macaw will once again be considered extinct in the wild.

This individual specimen has contributed much to what is known about this species in nature. The re-discovery of this last single bird in 1990 gave researchers a second chance to study this species, as until then, little was known about the Spix's Macaw in the wild. Also at that time, the Brazilian wildlife authorities formed the Permanent Committee for the Recovery of the Spix's Macaw. The Committee is a diverse group comprised of government officials, ornithologists, zoo specialists, as well as national and international holders of birds in captivity. The mission of this Committee was to save this species from extinction and coordinating the field and the captive breeding program.

The Ararinha Azul Project (Little Blue Macaw Project) was established by this Committee to develop the field conservation effort. Researchers of the project have been monitoring this bird for the last ten years, studying its natural history and working with the local community in conservation. They last reported seeing the bird (which is a male) 56 days ago. On a positive note, it appears that there might have been a sighting of this magnificent blue bird less than a month ago by a local farmer. As this is the dry season, there is a possibility that he might have moved to another area in search of food. Therefore, IBAMA and researchers of the project are mounting an intensive search of the region. Three teams made up of researchers and local woodsmen known as “mateiros” will search the area for information and sightings of this last bird.

The last Spix's Macaw had come to symbolize the region and the people of this area. The conservation program has developed into a model of community conservation in this economically distressed region, incorporating local needs with the conservation effort. Projects supported by the Committee have included the building of rural schoolhouses, a hunger relief campaign during a severe drought, range and livestock management extension courses, and even the restoration of a century old theater. Because of this positive community support, it is believed that if the last wild bird disappeared, it is due to natural biological causes and not to trappers.

With only a single bird in the wild, the recovery of the Spix's Macaw has always depended on the success or failure of the captive breeding program. Through collaboration between the participants throughout the world, the population has steadily increased to sixty birds (fifty-four are captive-hatched). The program is administered as a single global population with five breeding facilities throughout the world.

The information that the field researchers gathered by studying the last wild bird will be critical to eventually reintroducing captive-bred birds to the area. Therefore, even if the last wild bird is lost, he will have provided much information and insight into how this species survives. This knowledge should help researchers eventually establish a new wild population. With the support from the captive-breeding program, a reintroduction effort is planned for the near future. There is still hope that the bird known as the Spix's (Little Blue) macaw will once again fly in the wild “caatinga” habitat of Brazil.


Major funding for this program has been provided by the Brazilian Institute for the Environment and Natural Renewable Resources (IBAMA) in Brazil and the Fundación Loro Parque of Spain. Support is also provided by the American Federation of Aviculture, Ara Brasil Institute, the Houston Zoo, O Boticario Foundation; ASHOKA Foundation; Herbert Levy Institute; WWF-Brazil; Birds International, Inc.; BirdLife International; AZA Brazil Conservation Action Partnership; Fundação Parque Zoológico de São Paulo and many individuals involved in the program.

For further information contact:

Brazil: Yara de Melo Barros, Coordinator of field program and the Projeto Ararinha Azul, Brazil. Phone: (55) 48-233-6542 or (55) 48-9973-7036. E-mail: arabrasil@globalite.com.br or Maria Iolita Bampi, Chief of Wildlife, IBAMA, Brasília. Phone: (55) 61-225-8150, E-mail: mbampi@sede.ibama.gov.br

USA: Natasha Schischakin, Coordinator of the Captive Working Group for the Spix's Macaw, Conservation and Research Office, Houston Zoo. Phone: (1) 713-284-1386; E-mail: conservation@prodigy.net

Europe: Yves de Soye, Scientific Director, Fundación Loro Parque, Tenerife, Canary islands, Spain. Phone: [34] 922-37-40-81



Ibama dissolve comitê de recuperação da ararinha-azul

[As posted on the Ornitobr Yahoo! Group and IBAMA's website]

(O governo brasileiro quer a soberania sobre o destino de todas asararinhas-azuis em cativeiro existentes no mundo.)

O Ibama decidiu dissolver o Comitê para Recuperação da Ararinha-Azul (Cyanopsitta spixii), criado em 1990 com o objetivo de estabelecer estratégias de recuperação da espécie, uma das mais ameaçadas de extinção do mundo e endêmica da caatinga baiana. A dissolução do grupo deve-se, entre outros fatores, à falta de colaboração e às atitudes tomadas, à revelia do comitê, por parte de alguns membros.

O que desencadeou a crise interna do comitê foi o fato de o governo brasileiro não ter a soberania sobre o destino das aves que encontram-se no exterior, sendo isso uma grave ameaça ao programa de recuperação da espécie.

Das cerca de 60 aves existentes em cativeiro no mundo, o Brasil detém a propriedade de apenas oito delas. As demais estão em poder de mantenedores que integravam o grupo e de colecionadores particulares.

Nos últimos meses, o Ibama tentou reestruturar o comitê mas não obteve sequer o posicionamento da maioria dos membros em relação à nova proposta, fundamentada no princípio de que o governo brasileiro deve ter a soberania sobre o destino de todas aves. No entendimento dos especialistas, as ararinhas-azuis cativas devem ser manejadas como uma única população devido a fatores genéticos e demográficos. O último exemplar selvagem conhecido dessa espécie e que habitava a região de Curaçá, no sertão da Bahia, desapareceu em outubro de 2000.

"A dissolução do comitê não representa o fim dos esforços do Brasil para salvar a espécie.", afirma Iolita Bampi, coordenadora-geral de Fauna do Ibama. A partir de agora, cabe apenas ao instituto a continuidade do programa de recuperação da ararinha-azul. "Sem a cooperação dos mantenedores será impossível a recuperação da ararinha-azul e teremos que assumir a trágica extinção de mais uma espécie brasileira", disse Iolita Bampi.

Além da extinção do comitê, o Ibama e o Itamaraty pediram às autoridades Cites (Convenção sobre o Comércio Internacional das Espécies da Flora e da Fauna Selvagens em Perigo de Extinção, na sigla em inglês) a intervenção junto aos mantenedores estrangeiros para que eles se posicionem em relação à proposta brasileira. O Ibama também espera o apoio das ONGs ambientalistas nacionais e estrangeiras para pressionar os mantenedores a devolverem a propriedade das aves ao Brasil.

Mais informações: Jaime Gesisky - 61 316 1019 ou 1015/ Iolita Bampi - 316 1165 / Yara Barros- 61 9974 - 9446 e Carlos Bianchi - 316 -1235.

Obtido de www.ibama.gov.br


Copyright © 1992-2012 John Wall