The youth are consumers, voters and policy makers of the future. Sadly some are also destined to become the poachers and traffickers of tomorrow. The overstretched education system in Belize has little capacity for environmental education and many communities have a tradition of trading parrots as a means of support. Our goal is to instil empathy for wild parrots and all bird species and suggest environmentally sustainable means of generating income from the lucrative tourism industry.
The illegal wildlife trade has exploded in recent years, now totaling over $10US billion annually. WWF International states: "There are records of over 6.2 million wild-caught live birds were traded globally between 1996 and 2001" and we know the problem is growing every year. Poaching decimates parrot populations which impacts the health of the forests and damages the tourism industry. We at Belize Bird Rescue concentrate our efforts on reducing poaching through education.
We have produced and distributed posters, educational handouts and pamphlets to educate the general public about the Birds of Belize. Your donation will help to print and distribute even more copies so that all of Belize's classrooms has a poster, and every teacher is provided with the educational material needed to inform students of the need to preserve these birds for future generations.
Baby birds, especially parrots are routinely stolen from their nests. They are sold as pets locally and trafficked internationally. By addressing the problem at its source we aim to encourage those especially in rural areas to stop caging parrots, and instead to protect them from poachers and dealers. We encourage them to view wild birds as a sustainable resource that can generate income for the community from the vibrant and enthusiastic tourism industry.