17 Apr 2012

New report published on the State of Bolivia’s Birds

State of Bolivia's Birds report is launched in Bolivia
By Tris Allinson

Asociación Armonía (BirdLife in Bolivia) has just published a major report on the status of the country’s avifauna. The publication, entitled State of Bird Conservation in Bolivia, provides a detailed assessment of current bird populations, the principal threats they face, and the conservation actions that are being, or should be, put in place.

Despite lacking any marine habitats, landlocked Bolivia still boasts an impressive 1,422 bird species making it the sixth most bird-rich country in the world. Moreover, Bolivia has 12 species of macaw—the greatest diversity of these enigmatic parrots found in any country. Unfortunately, as human pressures on the environment intensify, many of Bolivia’s bird species face a growing risk of extinction. The report identifies deforestation and the subsequent transformation of large tracts of forest into pastures and farmlands as the principal threat. Chemical contamination, wildfires and rampant infrastructure development are also significant problems, with the illegal traffic of wild birds for the pet trade a major concern for some species such as the Critically Endangered Blue-throated Macaw Ara glaucogularis.

Despite the considerable challenges facing Bolivia’s birds, the report is clear on the actions that need to be taken in order to avoid further environmental degradation.

“The report was carefully designed to appeal to a wide-range of stakeholders, from a rural school child, a fisherman or scientist, to an agri-business manager or government official” says Bennett Hennessey, Executive Director of Asociación Armonía and one of the report’s authors, “we hope that this publication will bring these important issues to the attention of national and international policymakers and spur them to take appropriate actions”. 

State of Bird Conservation in Bolivia was formally launched earlier this year at three well-attended ceremonies in the cities of Santa Cruz, La Paz and Cochabamba. It received extensive media attention with coverage in a number of national newspapers and television networks.

This is the latest national report produced in collaboration with BirdLife’s State of the world’s birds programme. To download the report (available in Spanish) and access other State of the nation’s birds reports from around the world please click here

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This work was generously supported by the Aage V. Jensen Charity Foundation and the Darwin Initiative