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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. The town of Curaçá in Brazil’s of Bahia state lost its last wild Spix’s macaws (Cyanopsitta spixii) two decades ago. “No irregularities were observed. According to the ICMBio, the “German” Spix’s macaws will likely be released in the wild sometime next year, following an adaptation process. Brazil’s Ministry of the Environment has remained silent amid the controversy, providing no information on future actions or any specifics of the terms of the partnership with the ACTP, including whether the rest of the macaws held in Germany will be sent to Bahia. 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. 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. 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 breeder is alleged to have connections to noted members of a criminal gang in Berlin, known for robbery, drug trafficking and blackmail. 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. The exact number of Spix’s macaws in Brazil and in the ACTP’s possession is not clear. Today, only around 160 birds exist in captivity, making the Spix's Macaw the rarest parrot in the world, with even the New Zealand Kākāpō now officially numbering more. Those same concerns were echoed by a Brazilian biologist who was directly involved in the federal government program but chose to leave because they felt that all the decisions being made favored sending more Spix’s macaws to Guth. Mongabay is a U.S.-based non-profit conservation and environmental science news platform. 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. 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. “Where does the ACTP’s money come from? In May 2019, two Spix’s macaw chicks were hatched at Fazenda Cachoeira in Minas Gerais, a breeding center certified by the government. 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. Many partners were removed along the way due to politics and the interruption of the program, and I am positive that many of them are involved in the accusations,” he said. As things stand today, around 160 Spix's Macaws exist in professional parrot breeding facilities. 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. Select from premium Spix's Macaw of the highest quality. But there’s a shadow hanging over their return, cast by the controversial organization that bred them and continues to wield outsize influence over their fate. 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. But it gives no mention of who these donors are. We depend on support from users like you. A photo online shows the German bird breeder with Arafat Abou-Chaker, one of the gang’s leaders. Find the perfect Spix's Macaw stock photos and editorial news pictures from Getty Images. And should captive-breeding programs for species threatened with extinction take place in countries far from their original habitat? 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. 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. If you value this objective and impact-driven journalism, please consider becoming a sustaining member. The day that we will see the Spix’s Macaw flying free in the Caatinga once again is fast approaching! Paul Reillo was one of the few people interviewed for this article who agreed to be named. The ACTP possesses one of the largest private collections of threatened parrot species on the planet. I'd like to help cover the transaction fees of 0 for my donation. On the 5th of June 2018, during World Environment Day, the then President of Brazil, Michel Temer, signed a decree that is extremely important for the Spix’s Macaw and other species that share its previous habitat. In addition to Brazil, the ACTP has partnerships with other countries that have also proved controversial. Today only around 160 Spix's Macaws exist in captivity worldwide. What international NGOs and scientists, organizations and accredited agencies have endorsed the reintroduction project? The article reveals that, in the 1990s, when he was 26, Guth was sentenced to five years in prison for kidnapping and extortion. After the publication of the articles in The Guardian and a criminal complaint, the police began criminal inquiry proceedings. No one wants to talk about Guth because everyone is afraid of him.”. The funding for the reintroduction program and the establishment of the Spix’s Macaw Wildlife Refuge comes from the ACTP. Pairi Daiza, meanwhile, lists on its website multinational corporations such as DHL and Unilever among its supporters. In an emailed response to questions from Mongabay, Guth said “The names of all of our big donors and supporters can be found on each of our Facebook posts. During 2000 a captive female was released in an effort to form a wild pair but unfortunately this bird died of electrocution on a power line. The event was considered so important that the minister of the environment, Ricardo Salles, was in Petrolina, Pernambuco state, to receive the macaws alongside ACTP head Martin Guth and other Brazilian authorities. In the middle 1980s, by the time fieldwork to locate and understand the habitat of the Spix was completed, it was apparent that the Spix must be nearing extinction in the wild. 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.”. 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. For its part, the German agency says the ACTP is regularly monitored by the relevant authorities. Due to the small number of birds that formed the basis of the captive breeding program the preservation of the genetic diversity of the population has always been very challenging, however through dedication and hard work we have managed to improve things greatly in this regard. To date, the imperial amazons and the red-necked amazons have not been returned to Dominica. According to Martin Guth, the reintroduction center cost $1.4 million to build; an estimated $180,000 will be spent annually to maintain operations for the project, to be coordinated by Cromwell Purchase, the ACTP’s scientific and zoological director, along with ICMBio staff. At our breeding facility in Germany, our team works on the successful breeding of these rare parrots. They all had survived Hurricane Maria. He told Mongabay he prefers to keep his personal life separate from his projects and asserts that his criminal record is clean. Suitable areas must offer optimal conditions for the birds and be protected against further influences of humans. 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. 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