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Only a little is known about the life of the Spix's Macaw in the wild, with a very small amount of documented evidence found within ornithological literature. The justification for the removal of the parrots was that they were no longer safe there. Particularly intensive sensitisation of the local human population continues to be conducted in preparation for the reintroduction and the future coexistence between man and the Spix's Macaw. According to zoologist Paul Reillo, the founder and president of the Rare Species Conservatory Foundation and director of the Tropical Conservation Institute in the United States, one of the golden rules for nongovernmental organizations is absolute transparency. The majority of the population now resides at ACTP’s state-of-the-art parrot breeding centre. With funds from ACTP, the Lymington Foundation and Parrots International, a farm was purchased, which includes the area that served as the habitat of the last wild Spix's Macaws. “A translated version of this document was immediately provided to the governments of Brazil and Australia after the publication of the article in The Guardian. Every day, Mongabay reporters bring you news from nature’s frontline. In total seven organisations officially promote and support the Spix's Macaw Breeding Program worldwide. For six months, journalists Lisa Cox and Philip Oltermann had investigated Guth’s past, raising serious suspicions about his work, including possible involvement with the illegal wildlife trade and the use of the ACTP to launder money for European organized crime. “Where does the ACTP’s money come from? As things stand today, around 160 Spix's Macaws exist in professional parrot breeding facilities. The Spix's Macaw Re-Introduction Project is tasked with reintroducing the "extinct in the wild" Spix's Macaw, the rarest parrot in the world. The exact number of Spix’s macaws in Brazil and in the ACTP’s possession is not clear. Construction of the purpose built Spix’s Macaw Release, Breeding and Research Centre (RBRC) on land within the Spix’s historical habitat in the Caatinga is now well underway, with completion estimated mid-2019. Upon completion we will commence the transfer of birds from Germany to the RBRC in preparation for the first release of Spix’s into the wild, which is planned to take place in 2021. The article reveals that, in the 1990s, when he was 26, Guth was sentenced to five years in prison for kidnapping and extortion. She loves to study nature and write about living things. It has to be made clear who their donors are, how their money is invested, and it is essential that a complete inventory of their birds be made available — listing sex, age, number of births and deaths and importing and exporting procedures.”. Three birds were observed - perhaps the last three of their kind - near Curaça in the north of Bahia state, Brazil. The current population is now very close to being large enough and strong enough to allow for a successful and sustainable reintroduction. “Unfortunately, bird breeders in Brazil have thus far been unsuccessful in reproducing the species in significant numbers. At a meeting in 1987 of conservationist groups including IUCN at Loro Parque (one of the original Spix holders) in Tenerife, Canary Islands (Spain), only 17 captive Spix macaws could be located. In addition to Brazil, the ACTP has partnerships with other countries that have also proved controversial. Pairi Daiza, meanwhile, lists on its website multinational corporations such as DHL and Unilever among its supporters. All these birds were wild and already safely kept in captivity and, as such, there was no reasonable justification to expedite this transfer or violate numerous basic legal requisites for this action. Spix’s macaw chicks in an ACTP aviary in Germany. The smallest of the blue macaws, the Spix's Macaw gained international attention in 2011 via the Hollywood animated movie “Rio”, with the supposed last two Spix's Macaws in the lead roles. The ACTP also acquired birds from the Caribbean island nations of Saint Lucia and Saint Vincent. Between late February and December 2019, there is only one mention of the organization’s partners on the ACTP Facebook timeline: Deli Nature, Pairi Daiza, and Knutis Shop – Generalvertretung Roudybush-Pellets Deutschland, another animal feed supplier. Bringing the birds to Brazil is part of the National Plan of Action for the Conservation of the Spix’s Macaw, coordinated by the Chico Mendes Institute of Conservation and Biodiversity (ICMBio), which is affiliated with the Ministry of the Environment. Two questions will continue to shadow the Spix’s macaw reintroduction program amid the lack of transparency: for the good of a species, should one look the other way regarding how, and with what money, the reproduction process is conducted? The birds’ destination, for now, is a reintroduction center built for them in Curaçá. Not all of them come from Germany.”. (Wildlife trafficking is an industry worth $42.8 billion worldwide; the only illicit trades that are more lucrative are those for drugs and weapons). No one wants to talk about Guth because everyone is afraid of him.”. Survival Only in Captivity . 4, 2020. hbspt.cta.load(5981609, '6e487f3c-9666-4c8e-b87d-3111d3ccada2', {}); {amount} donation plus {fee_amount} to help cover fees. In the middle of the last century the species was already considered extinct, until it was spotted again in 1986. After the publication of the articles in The Guardian and a criminal complaint, the police began criminal inquiry proceedings. In order to achieve this goal the following wildlife protection measures are being pursued: The primary objective of the Spix's Macaw protection measures is to grow the captive population so it is large enough for the reintroduction of the species back into the wild. But he doesn’t deny his past mistakes. According to the ICMBio, the “German” Spix’s macaws will likely be released in the wild sometime next year, following an adaptation process. This source said they knew of one breeder who had come close to successfully reproducing chicks, but was then forced to send the birds to Europe. Together with the Brazilian Government, ACTP actively engages in the breeding and conservation of this beautiful bird and we are working towards its reintroduction back into the wild. It isn’t just the lack of transparency about the ACTP’s funding that has raised flags within the conservation community. Guth says he had no knowledge that the person who sold him the birds had connections to organized crime. This story was first reported by Mongabay’s Brazil team and published here on our Brazil site on Mar. “There had been no emergency to justify the removal of the parrots from Dominica. The town of Curaçá in Brazil’s of Bahia state lost its last wild Spix’s macaws (Cyanopsitta spixii) two decades ago. The macaw was declared extinct in the wild in 2000, a victim of wildlife trafficking and symbol of the ongoing struggle to conserve Brazil’s biodiversity. An international petition with 55,000 signatures on the website Care2 called for the BfN to conduct an investigation into Guth and the allegations surrounding the ACTP. They were being treated by an internationally recognized veterinary assistance team and were considered healthy,” the scientists wrote. The only other organization mentioned, listed as an “exclusive partner,” is the Belgian company Deli Nature, which sells animal feed. The spix macaw has been extinct in the wild since 2000. Association for the Conservation of Threatened Parrots e. V. National Plan of Action for the Conservation of the Spix’s Macaw, Chico Mendes Institute of Conservation and Biodiversity (ICMBio, Knutis Shop – Generalvertretung Roudybush-Pellets Deutschland, Big mammals are at risk in the world’s poorest countries, even within parks, ‘Nature is next’: Q&A with Finance for Biodiversity’s Simon Zadek, A Chilean archipelago rivaling the Galápagos fends off invasive species, Sexual harassment rife in Vietnam’s conservation sector, survey reveals, Fueled by impunity, invasions surge in Brazil’s Indigenous lands. The final macaw to have been sighted was male who had paired up with an illigers macaw. Everyone wants a piece of the Spix’s macaw program now that we, the partners in the project, have managed to make it this far with such success. Thanks to a dedicated team and enthusiastic supporters we have been able achieve remarkable success in our breeding efforts with the Spix's macaw: To strengthen the cooperation and to increase breeding success and genetic diversity, ACTP and ICMBio exchange birds as part of the breeding program: 2014: 2 Spix's Macaw offspring ("Carla" and "Tiago"), 2013: Transfer of ownership of “Felicitas“ to the State of Brazil, 2013: Transfer of “Paula“ to Brazil for breeding purposes, 2015: Transfer of “Carla“ and “Tiago“ (incl. “He only has creatures that are extremely rare in Germany, ones that cost a fortune on the black market. In January 2019, Cromwell Purchase, the ACTP’s science director and the man responsible for administering the reproduction center in Bahia, said the main reason for the accusations against Guth and the ACTP is envy. Mongabay is a reader-supported conservation and environmental science news service. The long-term goal of the Brazilian Government, ACTP and our other partners in the Spix's Macaw Program, is the reintroduction of the species back into the wild by the year 2021. In May 2019, two Spix’s macaw chicks were hatched at Fazenda Cachoeira in Minas Gerais, a breeding center certified by the government. In addition to illegal trafficking, the destruction of habitat due to human influences was the main reason for the extinction of the species. At our breeding facility in Germany, our team works on the successful breeding of these rare parrots. Feb 19, 2020 48 Facts About the Spix’s Macaw: Extinct in the Wild. Other breeders and biologists in Brazil only spoke on condition of anonymity, alleging that Martin Guth is dangerous and linked to organized crime, and fearing retaliation from the Brazilian government in the form of financial cuts to their projects. A juvenile Spix's macaw. 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