BRAZIL: Deforestation Endangers Northeastern Macaw
RIO DE JANEIRO, Apr 23 (Tierramérica).- Deforestation of the caatinga, a semi-arid biome in northeastern Brazil, could place the blue-winged macaw (Ara maracana) in danger of extinction, according to a new study from the Federal University of Rio Grande do Norte.*Source: Inter Press Service.
This colorful tropical bird, classified as vulnerable by the Brazilian Institute of the Environment and Natural Resources, is also a target of illegal trafficking, especially of young specimens.
The researchers monitored flocks of blue-winged macaws between 2009 and 2011, and found that while these flocks initially comprised 30 birds each, they are now made up of barely 10.
“These birds reproduce in the trunks of mulungús, typical trees of the caatinga ecosystem which are being cleared to create pastureland,” biologist Mauro Pichorim, who headed up the study, told Tierramérica.
“Official figures reveal the loss of almost 46 percent of the original vegetation of the caatinga. The data gathered will help in designing measures for the protection of this species,” he added.