Blue-Throated Macaws Are Recovering In Bolivia!

Nov 11, 2022by Olivia Harper - F&F

The Rainforest Trust has been working with local partners to protect and expand the habitat of the blue-throated macaws in Bolivia! Continue reading to learn more about the re-emergence of this beautiful bird species. 

Blue Throated Macaw In ForestBlue Throated Macaw In Forest

Image: Canva

One Of The World’s Rarest Birds, The Blue-Throated Macaw, Is Making A Hopeful Comeback

The blue-throated macaw is a critically endangered species, with only 200-300 wild individuals. They’re endemic to a small area of north-central Bolivia, known as Los Llanos de Moxos. This vibrant creature has a bright yellow chest, belly, legs, and under-wing area, with golden swoops extending on both sides of its turquoise throat. Its wings and head are also blue.

Once thought to be extinct, the blue-throated macaw had undergone a rapid population decline over three generations. They were primarily threatened by illegal pet trade and by habitat loss. The Rainforest Trust has been protecting and expanding the habitat of the species, and now, due to their strong conservation measures, the decline stopped and the population is recovering!

Nesting Bird BoxNesting Bird Box

Image: Canva

More Than 100 Colorful Blue-Throated Macaws Have Hatched In Nesting Boxes In Bolivia!

Holly Torres at Rainforest Trust said “Conservation of this turquoise-blue and yellow bird is essential, as it’s one of the rarest bird species in the world. Blue-throated macaws are incredibly special–spectacular, brilliant, and social. Our world would be vastly impoverished without them.”

The Rainforest Trust and their partner Asociación Armonía, created a nature reserve to protect the birds, kicking off a nesting program in 2007. Now the reserve is being expanded to continue conserving the species. As of last year, Asociación Armonía successfully fledged 105 blue-throated macaw chicks.

Since the creation of the nesting box program, there have been 113 successfully fledged macaws, and the area is now home to more than 20% of the global population of the species!

Blue Throated Macaw In TreeBlue Throated Macaw In Tree

Image: Canva

The Success Of This Reserve Gives Great Hope For Future Populations Of The Species 

Every year during the breeding season, the field team closely monitors each nest box to identify blue-throated macaw eggs, chicks, and parenting behaviour. Their reserve is located in the Beni Savanna, in the lowlands of the southwestern Amazon River basin.

It’s made up of natural savannas, forest islands with motacú and totai palm trees, dry forest patches, and river edge Amazonian forests. It’s also home to 146 mammal species and hundreds of species of birds!

“The blue-throated macaw continues to breed at these sites each season, an encouraging sign that the hard work to protect this area is working. The success of this reserve gives us great hope for future populations and for the future of the species,” says Torres.

We are beyond happy to see that the critically endangered, blue-throated macaws are slowly but steadily recovering, and that the species have a safe ecosystem to live in and reproduce!

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