Fund 16 Honduran Women Saving Endangered Parrots

by One Earth Conservation, Inc.
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Fund 16 Honduran Women Saving Endangered Parrots
Fund 16 Honduran Women Saving Endangered Parrots
Fund 16 Honduran Women Saving Endangered Parrots
Fund 16 Honduran Women Saving Endangered Parrots
Fund 16 Honduran Women Saving Endangered Parrots
Fund 16 Honduran Women Saving Endangered Parrots
Fund 16 Honduran Women Saving Endangered Parrots
Fund 16 Honduran Women Saving Endangered Parrots
Fund 16 Honduran Women Saving Endangered Parrots
Fund 16 Honduran Women Saving Endangered Parrots
Fund 16 Honduran Women Saving Endangered Parrots
Fund 16 Honduran Women Saving Endangered Parrots
Fund 16 Honduran Women Saving Endangered Parrots
Fund 16 Honduran Women Saving Endangered Parrots
Fund 16 Honduran Women Saving Endangered Parrots
Fund 16 Honduran Women Saving Endangered Parrots
Fund 16 Honduran Women Saving Endangered Parrots
Fund 16 Honduran Women Saving Endangered Parrots
Fund 16 Honduran Women Saving Endangered Parrots
Fund 16 Honduran Women Saving Endangered Parrots
Fund 16 Honduran Women Saving Endangered Parrots
Fund 16 Honduran Women Saving Endangered Parrots
Fund 16 Honduran Women Saving Endangered Parrots
Fund 16 Honduran Women Saving Endangered Parrots
Fund 16 Honduran Women Saving Endangered Parrots
Rescue Center workers examining scarlet macaw
Rescue Center workers examining scarlet macaw

Despite the global pandemic of Covid-19, our operations have been able to continue in La Moskitia, Honduras, although with several layers of challenges and added threats to the people. Communities have experienced illness and much restriction of movement to the only town in the area. Despite all this, the project has in fact prospered!

We completed construction on the new parrot Liberation cage and it has proved successful for liberating macaws. The first release of ten macaws occurred in September 2020 and all ten young macaws are flourishing. These are young birds that were rescued from wildfires, predators, or poachers and would have died without the Rescue and Liberation Center, which is mostly staffed by the women of Mabita, Honduras, a Miskitu indigenous village. Approximately 10 women work there, assisted by the children, and for the heavy work and construction, the men of the village. Among the first group of birds released from the new Liberation cage was a great green macaw; this was the first successful release of this species in Honduras.

To be able to rescue these birds, it takes many people to patrol the 11 villages which are part of this project. These rangers also keep the nests safe from poachers, who take chicks to sell into the illegal wildlife trade. This year, the rangers increased the numbers of registered and monitored active nests from 102 to 153, a 50% increase, while still keeping the poaching at 10% of the nests. It is an immense effort, especially given the ongoing pandemic. 

Despite our successes, there is an ongoing and worsening concern for the destruction of the broadleaf forest, which appears to be accelerating. We are increasing our patrols and activity in this forest, which necessitates a greater and stronger presence. We thank you for your help – your donations continue to save lives, parrots, and forests. 

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This quarter is typically our lowest activity time because the last bird fledged in September and training for the new breeding season begins at the end of January. During this time period, therefore, we concentrate on Rescue and Liberation activities, repairing equipment, summarizing and checking data, and generally slowing down before the patrols begin in February. The project, people, and parrots were challenged with added stressors this past quarter, including two hurricanes in November, and the continuing Covid-19 pandemic. Your donations will now help the people rebuild and continue to help the parrots, and each other.

Two hurricanes, Eta and Iota, passed over our project area and there was a great deal of flooding, and some damage to homes from falling trees. The agricultural fields of Mabita were completely inundated and they lost much of their future production. A wave of sickness came through in November, and many of the people showed symptoms of Covid-19.There is increased traffic of people in and around Mabita, due in part to the need to replant much of the crops and because of the timber harvest. This causes concern for the security of the birds at the Center where we have had thefts before. For this reason, the Rescue Center's manager arranged for more people to patrol at night around the Center.

All ten macaws from the September liberation are still present in the area and are well. A new batch of seven scarlet macaws were moved into the new liberation cage and training exercises for their liberation began in December. Four fly well and the other three are sluggish. Their release is planned for mid-January. There are currently seven yellow-naped amazons, but perhaps only three that can be trained for release (others have broken wings or poor feather condition). We will work towards their liberation beginning in early February.  There have been no additions to or losses of birds this quarter at the Center Some minor repairs were done to the liberation cage and the roof was enlarged.

An increased number of free flying macaws began showing up to be fed in November after the two hurricanes. The number of birds who needed to be fed almost doubled. Currently there are 20 that are in cages and up to 55 more that come in from the wild to feed. This has resulted in needing more people present during feeding, so as to diminish competition for food and to prepare more food tables. We have also had to increase by 50% the amount of food available and costs for feeding. All the birds that come to the food tables appear banded, except for one (there has always been one unbanded bird that was liberated years ago). Some unbanded birds remain in the trees (at least two). There are four juvenile birds that will not come down to feed, because they were hatched and fledged in the wild and then brought to the Center after the hurricanes by their parents, who were birds liberated in earlier years. We can’t say for sure why there has been such a large influx of birds, but we suspect it has something to do with the hurricanes.

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Scarlet macaws at ready to be liberated
Scarlet macaws at ready to be liberated

Despite the global pandemic of Covid-19, our operations have been able to continue in La Moskitia, Honduras, although with several layers of challenges and added threats to the people. Communities have experienced illness and much restriction of movement to the only town in the area. Despite all this, the project has in fact prospered!

We completed construction on the new parrot Liberation cage and it has proved successful for liberating macaws. The first release of ten macaws occurred in September 2020 and all ten young macaws are flourishing. These are young birds that were rescued from wildfires, predators, or poachers and would have died without the Rescue and Liberation Center, which is mostly staffed by the women of Mabita, Honduras, a Miskitu indigenous village. Approximately 10 women work there, assisted by the children, and for the heavy work and construction, the men of the village. Among the first group of birds released from the new Liberation cage was a great green macaw; this was the first successful release of this species in Honduras.

To be able to rescue these birds, it takes many people to patrol the 11 villages which are part of this project. These rangers also keep the nests safe from poachers, who take chicks to sell into the illegal wildlife trade. This year, the rangers increased the numbers of registered and monitored active nests from 102 to 153, a 50% increase, while still keeping the poaching at 10% of the nests. It is an immense effort, especially given the ongoing pandemic. 

Despite our successes, there is an ongoing and worsening concern for the destruction of the broadleaf forest, which appears to be accelerating. We are increasing our patrols and activity in this forest, which necessitates a greater and stronger presence. We thank you for any help you can offer us in this regard – your donations are saving lives, parrots, and forests. 

Rare great green macaw waiting to be liberated
Rare great green macaw waiting to be liberated
Liberation!
Liberation!

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With the funds raised last March, One Earth Conservation was able to hire 10 women to work at the Rescue and Liberation Center of Mabita. There have been 15 new parrots who have been rescued and added to the Center this year.

One of our Board members, Hector Orlando Portillo Reyes, is a Honduran wildlife biologist and here is how he replied in March to an email from Rev. Dr. LoraKim Joyner, Co-Director of One Earth Conservation, speaking about the impact of the pandemic on his country (note: English is not his first language):

"Greetings everyone, here in Honduras, like Guatemala, they have closed borders and there is a state of siege, so some constitutional guarantees have been lost, since many people still do not take the measures for good, so the government had to take extreme measures, for now it is 15 days and it is expected that it will probably be until Easter. At home we are locked up and we only go out for what is necessary. We do not know how all this will turn out, because we are a poor country and there are many people who use what they work during the day to live on that day. I think planet earth is taking a breather without so much pollution."

Due to the pandemic, we have not been able to organize and lead the wildlife club, nor were we able to produce the signs for visitors. We are planning to do both of those activities once the pandemic has ended. However, the Rescue Center remains open and operating even during these difficult times, and our in-field conservation work is also still being conducted by  local conservationists trained by One Earth Conservation and with remote support provided by Dr. Joyner and volunteer conservationists in the U.S.

Hungry scarlet macaw chick found
Hungry scarlet macaw chick found

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Organization Information

One Earth Conservation, Inc.

Location: Hollis Hills, NY - USA
Website:
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Twitter: @OneEarthCon
Project Leader:
Gail Koelln
Hollis Hills, NY United States

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Combined with other sources of funding, this project raised enough money to fund the outlined activities and is no longer accepting donations.
   

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