As regular CFZ-watchers will know, for some time Corinna has been doing a column for Animals & Men and a regular segment on On The Track... particularly about out-of-place birds and rare vagrants. There seem to be more and more bird stories from all over the world hitting the news these days so, to make room for them all - and to give them all equal and worthy coverage - she has set up this new blog to cover all things feathery and Fortean.

Friday, 13 March 2020

Extinct in the Wild: can these 5 bird species come back from captivity? - via Mark Raines

10 Mar 2020

In the light of the successful reintroduction of Guam Rail, we consider the prospects of the five remaining bird species categorised as Extinct in the Wild – all of which face unique barriers to re-entry.
Guam Kingfisher © Guam Department of Agriculture
By James Lowen

Extinction is forever. Or is it? Granted, there’s no way to reincarnate the Dodo Rapphus cucullatus. Yet five species that have vanished from forests or skies still survive in captivity. They may live behind bars, but they at least exist. Classified as ‘Extinct in the Wild’, these ‘lucky few’ have at least a smidgeon of hope of joining Guam Rail Hypotaenidia owstoni and California Condor Gymnogyps californianus in coming back from beyond the brink. So what plans are there to reintroduce the quintet?

Conservation breeding programmes – ex-situ fostering of a species’ population, usually in zoos or aviaries – have become an increasingly valuable tool thanks to what BirdLife International’s Nigel Collar and Stuart Butchart described in a 2014 scientific paper as “the increasing rapprochement between aviculture and conservation organisations”. The duo identified 257 bird species where captive breeding should be contemplated, including 13 where they judged it ‘necessary’.

Reintroductions are complex, requiring long-term commitment from a network of organisations. The birds featured here – three from Pacific islands, two Brazilian – tell different stories. Two are benefiting from painstaking recent reintroductions, with another planned for 2021. But there’s no date set for the others.

No comments:

Post a Comment