ProAves forest guard Jose Echavarria Perez
With great thanks to your generous support this year, the forest guards of ProAves have been working diligently to protect Colombia’s endangered birdlife while safeguarding more than 150,000 acres of tropical habitat at our 28 nature reserves.
One of these reserves, Arrierito Antioqueño, was established in 2006 to save a critically endangered robin-sized bird called the Chestnut-capped Piha (Lipaugus weberi). Discovered just 20 years ago with a very limited range on the northern slope of Colombia’s Central Andes, this bird species’ dark gray plumage, chestnut-brown crown, and yellow orbital ring set it apart from other pihas.
Tragically, fewer than 250 mature individuals of the Chestnut-capped Piha survive today, as the species suffers from extensive habitat destruction and fragmentation. In particular, gold mining and cattle ranching have destroyed much of the Central Andes and only an estimated 4% of the area’s original forest cover remains.
To save this rare bird from extinction, ProAves established Arrierito Antioqueño Bird Nature Reserve in 2006 by purchasing and preserving 1,310 acres of prime habitat for the species. This important reserve is also a sanctuary for other threatened wildlife, including the Multicolored Tanager, Black-and-gold Tanager, Black Tinamou, Red-bellied Grackle, and nearly a dozen rare frog species. Furthermore, the Cerulean Warbler, a rapidly declining migratory songbird that nests in North America, is known to visit this reserve during its non-breeding season.
With great help from friends like you, ProAves’ forest guards are able to maintain protection of nature reserves like Arrierito Antioqueño and ensure a future for the area’s endangered wildlife by conserving vital forest habitat, managing tree nurseries, and replanting native tree species. Additionally, a monitoring program was conducted for migratory birds, and both the Cerulean Warbler and Golden-winged Warbler were recorded at the reserve this year. What’s more, I am delighted to report a recent sighting of approximately 500 Mississippi Kites that flew over the reserve just four days ago.
Thank you again for your generous support that makes victories such as this possible!
With great appreciation from all of us at ProAves,
Luis Alfonso Ortega
Executive Director, Fundación ProAves de Colombia
Forest guard growing seedlings in the tree nursery
Critically Endangered Chestnut-capped Piha
Golden-winged Warbler sighted at the reserve
Cerulean Warbler sighted at the reserve