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Zoo Ave: Scarlet Macaw Reintroduction Project


Katie Higgins - Scientific Officer,
Dennis Janik - Director
Jenifer Hilburn - San Josecito Release Site Manager

Abstract

Zoo Ave Wildlife Conservation Park is working to re-establish a viable population of Scarlet macaws (Ara macao) within the San Josecito Valley of Costa Rica. Once prevalent in this area, Scarlet macaws were extirpated in the 1960's due to a combination of hunting, poaching and the spraying of pesticides by banana companies. These and other threats have been removed through the establishment of anti-poaching laws and the withdrawal of the banana companies from the region in the 1980's. In addition, the release site is located adjacent to a newly established National Park, Piedras Blancas. Coupled with the continued existence of appropriate Scarlet macaw habitat, these factors make the San Josecito Valley an appropriate setting for the reintroduction of this species.

Zoo Ave is an official Costa Rican wildlife rescue facility and has received support from the Costa Rican government for its efforts in native flora and fauna conservation. In addition, Zoo Ave has secured appropriate permits, as well as support of local residents, for the release of Scarlet macaws at the San Josecito Valley Release Site.

The Scarlet Macaw Reintroduction Project will take place over a minimum of ten years (1999-2009). The first group of release candidates has been screened for abnormal behavioral tendencies, sexed, given physical examinations, and tested for disease. These birds are currently housed in a large release cage with natural browse where they are observed daily. Two individuals were released in May 1999. The remaining birds will be released between August and December 1999. Through the use of soft release techniques, the birds are offered food at established feeding stations until they are fully self-sufficient. Artificial nestboxes will be provided and monitored at chosen sites within the release area. Additional monitoring will include the use of radio collar transmitters. Over the project period, a minimum of 130 individuals will be screened, trained, and released at the San Josecito Valley Release Site.

 

1.0 Introduction

Costa Rica has a rich avifauna of over 830 species, which is more than the United States and Canada combined (Stiles and Skutch 1989). This includes over 200 migrant species which travel through Costa Rica each year and over 600 resident species. The diversity in vegetation produced by a variety of landforms and climates provides habitats which support this large number of species.

Costa Rica has gained international recognition for its unparalleled biodiversity and conservation minded government, which established a world-renowned system of national parks. However, human population growth and land use practices have created the need to protect the diminishing native fauna and flora. Current legislation prohibits the hunting and poaching of wildlife including macaws (Ara spp), and is enforced by the Ministerio del Ambiente y Energia (MINAE) which includes the Sistema Nacional de Areas de Conservación (SINAC).

The Scarlet macaw (Ara macao) is endangered throughout its range (CITES Appendix I). This bird is a symbol of Costa Rican national pride and commitment to conservation, as its image can be found on numerous products and business logos such as travel agencies, eco-lodges, tours, airlines, etc. The Scarlet macaw's symbolic value is comparable to that of the American bald eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus) in the United States. By the 1960's the Scarlet macaw was reduced to two significant populations within Costa Rica: one in the Carara Biological Reserve (CBR) and the other on the Peninsula de Osa, both located along the Pacific Coast. The total population of wild Scarlet macaws is currently estimated at 1030 individuals (330 in CBR and 700 in Osa) (Nemeth and Vaughn pers. comm. 1999).

Zoo Ave's Scarlet macaw release project is being conducted in the Golfo Dulce area of southwestern Costa Rica. The goal of the reintroduction effort in this area is to reestablish a third viable population of Scarlet macaws in Costa Rica. Although begun as a conservation effort, the reestablishment of Scarlet macaws in this area will potentially increase tourism to an area previously economically devastated by the establishment and subsequent withdrawal of large banana companies. This area has not benefited from eco-tourism on the same scale as other well-known areas of Costa Rica. The Scarlet macaw and macaws in general are a valuable tourist attraction (Munn 1992, Marineros and Vaughan 1995). CBR has proven to be a popular area for foreign visitors, and the Scarlet macaw is undoubtedly a key factor in its success (Marineros and Vaughan 1995). This project will also increase the body of research on the release and reintroduction of psitticine species as scientifically relevant results will be submitted for publication by Zoo Ave biologists.

2.0 Background Information on Zoo Ave

Zoo Ave Wildlife Conservation Park is located in La Garita de Alajuela, Costa Rica. The Zoo property is 14 hectares of transitional zone between humid tropical forest and dry tropical forest. Since 1990, over 1,100 native trees have been planted on this property, transforming the former coffee and citrus plantation to the status of zoological park. The Zoo is operated by the non-profit, private Nature Restoration Foundation (Fundación Restauración de la Naturaleza), which works on the behalf of the public interest and native Costa Rican flora and fauna. Zoo Ave and the Foundation are dedicated to preserving the rich, unparalleled natural diversity of Costa Rica so that it may be understood, respected and enjoyed by future generations of Costa Ricans and foreign visitors.

Zoo Ave has been working successfully since 1990 to breed, rehabilitate and release Costa Rican fauna. By 1995, Zoo Ave was recognized by the Costa Rican government as an official Wildlife Rescue Center. Since this time, Zoo Ave has continued to grow and improve both exhibits and support facilities including a new kitchen, wildlife veterinary clinic and office which were completed in 1997. All of the animals at Zoo Ave were donated as injured, orphaned, or former pets or were captive bred at the Zoo. Every animal is evaluated for potential release. If deemed unreleaseable, every attempt is made to put the animal into the captive breeding program. When these options are not possible, animals are kept in the best possible conditions with a healthy, varied diet and with others of the same or compatible species.

Zoo Ave is open daily to the public and welcomes over 60,000 visitors each year. The Zoo encourages attendance by Costa Ricans by offering a significantly reduced entrance fee as well as picnic grounds and free entrance to some schools.

3.0 Status of Scarlet Macaw Populations in Costa Rica

The range of the Scarlet macaw extends from southern Mexico into eastern Bolivia (Juniper and Parr, 1998). While this is considered the greatest latitudinal range for any macaw species (Clubb and Clubb 1992, Marineros and Vaughan 1995), Scarlets are found only in fragmented habitats and confined to small disjunct populations throughout Central America (Juniper and Parr 1998). This species is considered endangered throughout its range (CITES Appendix I) except in El Salvador where it has been extirpated (Marineros and Vaughan 1995, Juniper and Parr 1998). There are two recognized subspecies of Ara macao: A. macao macao which ranges from Costa Rica south through South America and A. macao cyanoptera whose range is from SE Mexico to Nicaragua (Clubb and Clubb 1992, Juniper and Parr 1998).

In Costa Rica, the Scarlet macaw is found primarily in two areas of the Pacific slope or in small groups within scattered pockets of habitat. The first of the two major populations of Scarlet macaws is found in and around CBR, located in the Central Pacific region the country. This population contains approximately 330 individuals (Nemeth pers. comm. 1999, Vaughn 1999). This population has been under intensive study since 1990 through the efforts of the Programa Región al en Manejo de Vida Silvestre (PRMVS), at the Universidad Nacional, Costa Rica (UNA). Data collected from this research provides the most comprehensive information available on the natural history of Scarlet macaws in Costa Rica. The second extant Costa Rican population of Scarlets occurs on the Osa Peninsula in and around Corcovado National Park and contains approximately 700 individuals (Vaughn 1999). This population has not been studied intensively and therefore little is known about the movements, nesting habits or foraging behavior of the birds in this area.

Two primary threats to the Scarlet macaw populations in Costa Rica are habitat destruction and poaching for the illegal pet trade. These birds once occupied approximately 42,500 km2 of the national territory of Costa Rica which totals 50,000 km2. Due to deforestation, 20% of the original Scarlet macaw habitat (9,100 km2) remained in 1993. All of this territory is currently protected (Marineros and Vaughan 1995). While estimates of poaching's impact on the populations of Scarlet macaws in Costa Rica are hard to calculate, it is reasonable to assume that they are substantial. For example, of the 34 known nests in and around CBR between 1990 and 1993, 56% showed signs of yearly poaching activity. Because of the low unemployment rate in Costa Rica and an overall healthy economy, it is believed that poaching practices in this country are a form of income supplementation rather than one of necessity for most families (Marineros and Vaughan 1995). In addition, poaching of wildlife is against Costa Rican Wildlife Law (No. 7317). This law states that violators will be imprisoned or fined up to US $325, potentially more than would be received for the bird on the illegal pet market (approximately US $154 - $384) (Marineros and Vaughan 1995). However, poaching remains a major hurdle to the recovery of Scarlet macaw populations in Costa Rica, therefore public education and awareness programs are essential to conservation efforts.

4.0 Background Information on Scarlet Macaw Reintroduction

Reintroduction as a wildlife management strategy is highly controversial and should be approached with the utmost care and scrutiny. Additionally, reintroductions of psittacine species have been little utilized to date (Wiley et al. 1992). Zoo Ave's Scarlet Macaw Reintroduction Project has been designed using pertinent reintroduction guidelines (World Conservation Union 1995), literature available on other reintroduction programs (Beck 1985, Wemmer and Derrickson 1987, Clubb 1992, Clubb and Clubb 1992, Association for Parrot Conservation 1994, Wiley et al. 1992, Kleiman 1996) and soft release techniques developed at the Zoo (Chacón and Janik 1999).

To date, reintroduction programs have been either poorly documented or unsuccessful (Wemmer and Derrickson 1987, Wiley et al. 1992). However, exceptions to this generality do exist and several well documented attempts at bird reintroductions may prove useful to the design of our Scarlet Macaw Reintroduction Project. The most notable of which include the Peregrine Fund's efforts in the 1980's and 1990's to augment wild populations of Peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus) with captive bred birds in the western United States. It is estimated that over 4,000 captive bred falcons were released over a 20 year period (Wemmer and Derrickson 1987). Due in part to these efforts, the Peregrine was recently removed from the Endangered Species List within the U.S. However other release programs, such as the Thick-billed parrot (Rhynchopsitta pachyrhyncha) reintroduction attempt carried out in 1986 using wild caught Mexican birds confiscated from the illegal bird trade in the U.S. (Clubb 1992, Wiley et al. 1992), have met with only limited success. After analyzing both successful and unsuccessful reintroduction programs, several elements can be defined as vital to a well planned reintroduction plan. These include: 1) origin of release stock, 2) health and training of release stock, 3) the existance of appropriate habitat, 4) the identification and elimination of factors leading to original extirpation, 5) education and cooperation of local peoples, 6) adequate numbers of release stock, 7) a multi-disciplinary team and 8) post-release monitoring and care of released individuals (Beck 1985, Wemmer and Derrickson 1987, Clubb 1992, Wiley et al. 1992, World Conservation Union 1995, Kleiman 1996, Sanz and Grajal 1998).

Zoo Ave's decision to begin the Scarlet Macaw Reintroduction Program is based on the endangered status of this species in Costa Rica, the continued existance of protected habitat within the native range of the Scarlet macaw in an area where the species has been extirpated, an existing captive population and an available source of new genetic material in the form of confiscated wild birds which are entrusted to the Zoo. It is important to begin reintroduction efforts while enough genetic material exists in the wild to help sustain a viable population. Reintroductory programs for endangered species which have not yet reached a point of crisis are potentially more likely to succeed due to a higher level of available genetic material (Wemmer and Derrickson 1987). In addition, it is generally inadviseable to experiment with a species which is critically endangered (Wiley et al. 1992).

5.0 Project design and implementation:

Goals: This project proposes to establish a third, self-sustaining population of Scarlet macaws within its historic range.

Objectives include: a) the enhancement of the long-term survival of Scarlet macaws; b) the provision of long-term economic benefits to the local and national economy through eco-tourism and c) the promotion of conservation awareness.

The Project has been designed to re-establish a self-sustaining Scarlet macaw population over a minimum of ten years through the release of 130 birds within the project area. Approval for the Scarlet Macaw Reintroduction Project has been obtained from relevant government agencies (MINAE and SINAC) and neighboring land owners.

Release Site: An appropriate site for the reintroduction of an endangered species should be within the species' historic range, retain appropriate habitat parameters and preferably have protected status. In addition, experts suggest that birds released in an area lacking an existing wild population or containing low numbers of conspecifics will potentially survive better and be less likely to negatively impact wild populations (Wiley et al. 1992, World Conservation Union 1995, Kleiman 1996).

In 1998, the Nature Restoration Foundation acquired property in the Golfo Dulce region in southwestern Costa Rica. The San Josecito Valley Release Site is located approximately 16 km north of the small town of Golfito and borders the 15,000 hectare (150 square km) Piedras Blancas National Park. This park is a result of a combination of governmental purchases and property donations from conservation-conscious individuals and groups. Declared a National Park in 1991, Piedras Blancas is classified as wet tropical forest with evergreen vegetation. Annual rainfall is estimated at 5,500 mm to 6,000 mm with peak rainfall in September of 900 mm. The park is located at 83° 15 min West longitude and 8° 40 min North latitude. Average elevation is 365m above sea level. The Austrian conservation group, Regenwald der Österreicher, donated hundreds of hectares to this park, and sold Zoo Ave five hectares bordering the park for this release project. This site is not accessible by way of roads. Arrival is via a forty minute boat ride, or a seven hour hike over rough terrain. There are few surrounding human inhabitants, some of whom are employed by Zoo Ave to assist in construction and maintenance of the San Josecito Valley Biological Station and field work including feeding station observations, browsing and radio tracking. Full time park guards regularly patrol both the park and surrounding areas insuring long term protection of the release birds.

The climate, topography and vegetation of the site closely resembles Corcovado National Park. Comparisons of tree species at the San Josecito Valley Release Site and three different sites within the Scarlet macaw range have been made in order to evaluate the available natural food resource in and around the release site. Many key species have been identified within the site including jabillo (Hura crepitans), almendro (Dipteryx spp.), jobo (Spondias mombin), and cedro amargo (Cedrela odorata) (Marineros and Vaugahn 1995). These tree species, among others found in the region, should provide sufficient food sources year round to Scarlet macaws, which are opportunistic feeders.

The two main causes for the Scarlet macaw extirpation in this area in the 1960's were hunting/poaching and pollution via aerial spraying of pesticides. Approximately ten years ago, Golfito was awarded tax reduced status on all import items. As a result, the residents of the Golfito area have prospered through the trade of electronics and other merchandise as well as increased employment opportunities. Hunting and poaching have decreased in the area over the past few generations in part due to the relocation of many of its former residents who sold property to the government for the formation of Piedras Blancas or to foreigners who bought up beach-front property in the area (Torres pers. comm. 1999). Further, the latter issue of aerial spraying has been removed from the area with the withdrawl of the banana companies in the mid 1980's, and new Costa Rican laws which have substantially reduced this environmentally damaging practice. Educational efforts designed to heighten awareness of the Scarlet macaw, its potential significance to eco-tourism and the vital role these birds play in the environment will be established in the area. This reduction of the factors which have led to macaw decline in the release area combined with the newly established national park create an appropriate setting for the reintroduction of Scarlet macaws.

In addition to the Scarlet Macaw Reintroduction Project, this site is also utilized for the rehabilitation and release of other psittacine species. During Semana Santa (week prior to Easter), many birds and other animals are poached throughout the country. This phenomenon is well known in Costa Rica and is a result of both holiday status and the prevalence of young animals at this time of year. MINAE and other government officials confiscate illegally obtained animals during this critical time of year. As an officially designated Wildlife Rescue Center, Zoo Ave is entrusted with many of these animals to raise and release back into the wild. Our San Josecito Valley Release Site received over 200 animals in its first two years of operation (1998-99). This work demonstrates the need for such a facility in this region of Costa Rica.

Release Stock: It is generally believed that wild caught animals are better candidates for reintroduction than captive bred individuals (Beck 1985, Wiley et al. 1992, World Conservation Union 1995, Kleiman 1996). If captive bred animals are used for reintroduction, most experts agree that these individuals should be "as close to wild stocks in time and generation as possible" (Wiley et al. 1992,183). Additionally, when possible, captive bred individuals should be released in combination with wild individuals to increase the chances that inexperienced captive bred animals will learn valuable survival skills from their wild counterparts (Beck 1985, Wiley et al. 1992, Kleiman 1996). The majority of the release candidates for this project will be first or second generation captive bred individuals from wild caught birds. These animals are of Costa Rican origin as all have entered the program as either government confiscations or as donations from residents who bought them on the local pet market. Ideally, release candidates will be drawn from a combination of wild caught, confiscated animals and captive bred stock. However, current government opinions favor the exclusive release of captive bred animals for any wildlife reintroduction project in Costa Rica (Escofet 1999).

Zoo Ave currently has the potential for ten to twelve viable breeding pairs of Scarlet macaw. Each year, these birds are monitored for reproductive status. The first eggs of the season are often removed from the nest in order to stimulate the birds to double-clutch. Birds from the first clutches are then hand fed until they are weaned around 110 days of age. The breeding Scarlet macaws are allowed to raise at least one clutch a year, depending on past reproductive success. Hand reared and parent reared young are DNA fingerprinted and sexed to establish genetic baseline information and to allow for a 1:1 sex ratio for release candidates (Wiley et al. 1992). These birds are then moved into large flight cages to gain flight experience and form social bonds.

Zoo Ave's 1999 breeding season has thus far produced 12 young Scarlet macaws, nine of which were hand fed, while three were raised by the parents. As our Scarlets settle into the Zoo's recently constructed Breeding Area (completed July 1998), we expect that more of our potential pairs will successfully produce young. In addition, more of the young will be left in the nestbox for the parents to raise, as parent-reared individuals have been proven better release candidates than those that are hand-fed (Wemmer and Derrickson 1987, Wiley et al. 1992, Kleiman 1996). Every effort is being made to assure a high level of genetic variability in release candidates. Family profiles are being developed from breeding records and will be enhanced using DNA micro-satellite information from all captive macaws at Zoo Ave within the next year.

Health Screening: One of the primary concerns when introducing either captive bred or wild birds held in captivity is the potential for disease to spread from the captive population to resident wild bird populations (Association for Parrot Conservation 1994 a and b, Wiley et al. 1992, Kleiman 1996). In order to reduce this risk, rigorous prerelease health screening including blood, fecal and general examinations are performed on all individuals before they are considered viable candidates for Zoo Ave's Scarlet Macaw Reintroduction Project. Exams are conducted by the Zoo's consulting veteranarian, Dr. Mauricio Jiménez Soto. Blood screening includes tests for contagious diseases such as avian influenza, infectious laryngothracheitis virus (Herpes), psittacosis, salmonellosis, avian polyoma virus and Newcastle disease (Sanz and Grajal 1987). The blood tests are performed by Dr. Gerry M. Dorrestein DVM, PhD. (Dept. Vet Pathology, Utrecht University, The Netherlands).

Prerelease Conditioning: Comparatively, captive reared birds are at a disadvantage to wild caught birds when released into a new environment. In captivity, all of the essentials are provided including food, water and shelter. Once these birds are released they will need to be able to fly well, find food and water on their own, avoid predators and seek refuge from inclement weather. Young captive bred birds must therefore receive rigorous prerelease training in order to be better prepared for life in the wild (Beck 1985, Wiley et al. 1992, Kleiman 1996). Zoo Ave's prerelease conditioning protocol contains several elements that will better prepare the release candidates for life in the wild including a large prerelease enclosure (40 m long x 6 m wide x 5 m high), provision of natural foods and local browse and housing of candidates in a group setting (Wiley et al. 1992, World Conservation Union 1995, Kleiman 1996). Prerelease analysis of macaws include willingness and ability of individuals to eat natural foods and other behavioral criteria such as group dynamics and composition. Physical abilities such as climbing and flying will be evaluated prior to release. Birds which do not appear to adapt well to prerelease conditions will be removed from the release program or held until the next release period.

Monitoring: Adequate monitoring is an essential part of any reintroduction program (Wiley et al. 1992, World Conservation Union 1995, Kleiman 1996). Monitoring for the Scarlet Macaw Reintroduction Program will include feeding station observations, nest box monitoring and radio telemetry. The birds will be monitored throughout the ten-year project period (1999-2009). The only time they will be handled is if intervention is deemed necessary, i.e. an individual is thin, weak, or sick. In such a case, the bird will be recaptured, examined and fecal and blood cultures will be taken to determine infection or disease. Assessment will be made if the bird can continue to be housed at the release site or must be returned to Zoo Ave's Alajuela site.

Approximately 40 nestboxes will be placed around the site and in the surrounding forest. When these boxes are being used, biologists will monitor the nestboxes for eggs and chicks. Data such as clutch size, fertility rates, growth and development of chicks and parasite content of boxes will be recorded. Chicks will be banded for identification. In addition, blood samples will be taken from a random number of young in order to determine the genetic variability of the reintroduced population.

Radio collars used in this project are the same design as those used in Buffon's macaw (Ara ambigua) studies performed in northeast Costa Rica (Bjork and Powell 1995). These collars consist of a brass cylinder containing a battery with an expected life of 12-18 months. The attachment is a brass collar 1 cm wide which also functions as an antenna. This collar fits around the neck of a bird and attaches with a locking nut, completing the circuit. Each unit weighs 30 g or approximately 3.3% of an average Scarlet macaw's body weight (900 g) (Stiles and Skutch 1989). The expected range of these transmitters is 5 km by ground (Bjork and Powell 1995, Holohill pers. comm. 1999).

A dummy transmitter was first obtained from the manufacturer (Holohill Systems Ltd.) and attached to one of the release candidates for several months prior to obtaining transmitters for this project. The unit did not appear to cause the bird discomfort or limit its movements in any way. Additionally, the bird did not attempt to remove the collar. A total of eleven collars were purchased for the first release effort. This will ensure that approximately half of the birds released in 1999 will be tracked.

Habitat augmentation and soft-release techniques: In addition to prerelease conditioning, research shows that captive reared birds often require subsidy of food and shelter after release (Beck 1985, Wiley et al. 1992, Association for parrot Conservation 1994 a, Kleiman 1996). Zoo Ave's soft release techniques require food augmentation for all released animals in and around the release area until they are fully self-sufficient (Chacón and Janik 1999). In addition, artificial nestboxes will be constructed and placed in and around the biological station in order to assure adequate nesting habitat for the reintroduced population.

A variety of hanging and stand feeders will be placed in and around the biological station beginning with the release of the first birds and continuing throughout the release effort. Foods provided will be a combination of local fruits and nuts and a specially prepared diet high in protein and fat. In addition to providing essential resources to released birds, feeding stations provide an opportunity for daily visual monitoring (Kleiman 1996).

Appropriate nesting cavities are a potential limiting factor for reproduction in macaw populations. In studies conducted in Peru on three large macaw species (Scarlet macaws, Green-winged macaws (Ara chloroptera) and Blue and yellow macaws (Ara ararauna)), a high degree of aggression was observed in and around nest sites during the breeding season indicating intense competition for low numbers of appropriate nesting cavities. Researchers provided artificial nestboxes to augment available nesting habitat. In each case, macaws attempted to nest in the artificial boxes. In one case, a pair of Blue and yellow macaws successfully fledged young (Munn, C.A. 1992). Artificial cavity studies have also been conducted on the CBR Scarlet macaw population. 12 out of 33 nestboxes placed between 1995-1999 were found with a total of 21 chicks (Vaughan et al. 1999). Nestboxes provided for the Scarlet Macaw Reintroduction Project will be similar in design to those used in and around CBR.

Education and Community Involvement: An educational component is critical to the success of any conservation effort including reintroduction (Wiley et al. 1992, World Conservation Union 1995, Kleiman 1996). A meeting was held in San Josecito in April 1998 in which a Zoo Ave biologist presented the proposed reintroduction plans. Attendees were given the opportunity to voice opinions and questions. All feedback was positive, and many people indicated a desire to participate in the project. In addition, biologists at the site are currently contacting locals to inform them about the project and find ways in which the people can be involved. There are a number of people that have already become involved with building a platform and the flight cage, fruit collecting, and browsing of cages. Outreach programs using local and international volunteers will be designed to give students and others in the community a chance to participate in the project.

T-shirts, coloring books and informational release brochures are being distributed to local schools and people in the immediate release area and to smaller, more remote communities within the region. Many of the people in and around Golfito are proud of the project and the role that their community has played. Such promotional and educational items help to make people in and around the release area aware of the project and its importance to the conservation of Costa Rica's natural resources.

6.0 Post-Project Follow-up

The data for this project will be published in scientific journals as well as layman magazines. Project results will be presented at scientific conferences, schools and to other interested parties. Updates will be presented on the Zoo Ave web page: www.zooave.org.

This project is estimated to take a minimum of ten years. The first releases began in May, 1999 and will continue as needed. Post-release monitoring will be continuous. There will be at least one permanent on-site biologist to monitor released birds and candidates throughout the project period.

Project success will be measured by the success of release birds in adapting to the natural surroundings. This will be represented by the decreasing dependency of these animals on feeding stations and successful rearing of young. As all of the individuals released in any reintroduction attempt will eventually die (Kleiman 1996), success of this project will not be based on survival of specific birds but rather on the genetic variation of the surviving progeny of released birds.

7.0 Acknowledgements

We would like to thank those who devoted time to the editing of this document: Nicole Nemeth and Jennifer Anstee. In addition thanks are appropriate to those who have contributed in various ways, to the Scarlet Macaw Reintroduction Project: Shirley Ramirez and Frederico Guillen of the ACOSA MINAE office for their support and assistance; Holohill Systems Ltd. for technical assistance in determining appropriate design and donation of the prototype radio-collar; Daniel Hilliard of the Memphis Zoo and Executive Director of the Zoo Conservation Outreach Group, for his support and assistance in securing funding; Michael Schnitzler of the Austrian based Regenwald der Österreicher; Raleigh-Durham Caged Bird Society; Kenosha Exotic Bird Club; The Central New York Cage Bird Club and Capitol City Bird Society, Inc.

References

Association for Parrot Conservation. (1994a) Policy statement on confiscated parrots. Association for Parrot Conservation, Arlington, Virginia.

Association for Parrot Conservation. (1994b) Policy statement on reintroduction for parrot conservation. Association for Parrot Conservation, Arlington, Virginia.

Beck, B.B. (1991) Managing Zoo Environments for Reintroduction in AAZPA Annual Conference Proceedings.

Beck, B. (1985) Reintroduction, Zoos, Conservation, and Animal Welfare, in Norton, B.G., Hutchins, M., Stevens, E.F., and Maple, T.L. Ethics on the Ark Zoos, Animal Welfare and Wildlife Conservation. Washington and London: Smithsonian Institution Press. 155-163.

Bjork, R. and G.V.N. Powell. (1995) Buffon's Macaw: Some Observations on the Costa Rican Population, its Lowland Forest Habitat and Conservation, in Abramson, J., Speer, B.L. and Thomsen, J.B. The Large Macaws Their Care, Breeding and Conservation. Fort Bragg, California: Raintree Publications. 387-392.

Chacón, G.S. and D. Janik. (1999) Técnicas de liberación gradual para avifauna nativa en La Garita, Costa Rica, in Drews, C. (ed.) Rescate de Fauna en el Neotrópico. Washington D.C.: Humane Society International. 415-425.

Clubb, S.L. (1992) Thick-billed Parrots: Homecoming for Our Native Parrot, in Schubot, R.M, Clubb, K.J., Clubb, S.L. Psittacine Aviculture Perspectives, Techniques and Research. Loxahatchee, Florida: Avicultural Breeding and Research Center. (22.1-22.4).

Clubb, K. and S.L. Clubb. (1992) Status of Macaws in Aviculture, in Schubot, R.M., Clubb, K.J., and Clubb, S.L. Psitticine Aviculture Perspectives, Techniques and Research. Loxahatchee, Florida: Avicultural Breeding and Research Center. (24.1-24.5).

Escofet, G. (1999) "Debate raging over release of wild animals," in Tico Times. Friday, August 27, 1999. San José, Costa Rica. 6-7.

Hancocks, D. (1985) An Introduction to Reintroduction, in Norton, B.G., Hutchins, M. Stevens, E.F. and Maple, T.L. (eds.) Ethics on the Ark. Washington and London: Smithsonian Institution Press. 181-183. Association for Parrot Conservation. (1994a) Policy statement on confiscated parrots. Association for Parrot Conservation, Arlington, Virginia.

Association for Parrot Conservation. (1994b) Policy statement on reintroduction for parrot conservation. Association for Parrot Conservation, Arlington, Virginia.

Beck, B.B. (1991) Managing Zoo Environments for Reintroduction in AAZPA Annual Conference Proceedings.

Beck, B. (1985) Reintroduction, Zoos, Conservation, and Animal Welfare, in Norton, B.G., Hutchins, M., Stevens, E.F., and Maple, T.L. Ethics on the Ark Zoos, Animal Welfare and Wildlife Conservation. Washington and London: Smithsonian Institution Press. 155-163.

Bjork, R. and G.V.N. Powell. (1995) Buffon's Macaw: Some Observations on the Costa Rican Population, its Lowland Forest Habitat and Conservation, in Abramson, J., Speer, B.L. and Thomsen, J.B. The Large Macaws Their Care, Breeding and Conservation. Fort Bragg, California: Raintree Publications. 387-392.

Chacón, G.S. and D. Janik. (1999) Técnicas de liberación gradual para avifauna nativa en La Garita, Costa Rica, in Drews, C. (ed.) Rescate de Fauna en el Neotrópico. Washington D.C.: Humane Society International. 415-425.

Clubb, S.L. (1992) Thick-billed Parrots: Homecoming for Our Native Parrot, in Schubot, R.M, Clubb, K.J., Clubb, S.L. Psittacine Aviculture Perspectives, Techniques and Research. Loxahatchee, Florida: Avicultural Breeding and Research Center. (22.1-22.4).

Clubb, K. and S.L. Clubb. (1992) Status of Macaws in Aviculture, in Schubot, R.M., Clubb, K.J., and Clubb, S.L. Psitticine Aviculture Perspectives, Techniques and Research. Loxahatchee, Florida: Avicultural Breeding and Research Center. (24.1-24.5).

Escofet, G. (1999) "Debate raging over release of wild animals," in Tico Times. Friday, August 27, 1999. San José, Costa Rica. 6-7.

Hancocks, D. (1985) An Introduction to Reintroduction, in Norton, B.G., Hutchins, M. Stevens, E.F. and Maple, T.L. (eds.) Ethics on the Ark. Washington and London: Smithsonian Institution Press. 181-183.

 


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