FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date: June 17, 2008
Contact: Lilibeth Serrano 787-851-7297 ext. 239 or (Cell.) 787-505-4397
Draft Revised Recovery Plan for the Puerto Rican Parrot Available for Review
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service seeks public comment on the Draft Revised Puerto Rican Recovery Plan for the Puerto Rican parrot federally listed as endangered. Public comments will be accepted on this draft recovery plan for 60 days until August 18, 2008.
The draft revised recovery plan outlines necessary steps to recover the Puerto Rican parrot. To achieve recovery, the Service includes continued actions such as managing threats to the species and raising parrots in a new state of the art aviary, which have kept the species from becoming extinct. The release of captive bred parrots into the wild continues to be the primary path to recovery.
Two small Puerto Rican parrot populations still survive in the wild. A minimum of 25 individuals exist in the El Yunque National Forest in eastern Puerto Rico and 10 individuals in the Río Abajo Forest (RAF) in north central Puerto Rico.
A third population is essential to the species’ recovery and viability. The Service along with the U.S. Forest Service and the Puerto Rico Department of Natural and Environmental Resources are working together to achieve recovery through captive populations. Presently, two captive population facilities hold more than 225 individuals: the Iguaca Aviary and the José L. Vivaldi Aviary in eastern and north-central Puerto Rico, respectively.
To view the draft revised recovery plan on the web, please visit http://www.fws.gov/caribbean/es/
In 1982, the original plan describing actions for the recovery of the species was developed and later revised in 1987. The current draft revised recovery plan describes actions considered necessary for the conservation of this species, establishes important milestones needed to downlist the species from endangered to threatened, and estimates the time and cost for implementing needed recovery measures. Partnerships are a key element of this draft revised recovery plan. The U.S. Forest Service, the Puerto Rico Conservation Trust, and the Service are working together to broaden the conservation efforts for this endangered parrot species.
Please send written comments about the Draft Revised Puerto Rican Parrot Recovery Plan by August 18, 2008, to U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Caribbean Field Office, P.O. Box 491, Road 301, Km 5.1, Boquerón, Puerto Rico 00622; fax 787-851-7440. To obtain a copy of the draft recovery plan, please contact the Service at the above address or by telephone at 787-851-7297 ext. 231. The Service will consider all information presented during the public comment period.
The endemic Puerto Rican parrot, largely green with a red forehead and blue flight feathers, is one of nine extant Amazona parrots occurring in the West Indies, and it is considered one of the 10 most endangered bird species in the world. Measuring about 29 centimeters or 11 inches in length and weighing about 270 grams or 10 ounces, this species is one of the smallest in its genus, although it is similar in size to other Amazona in the Greater Antilles. This species was federally listed as endangered species in 1967 under the Endangered Species Preservation Act of 1966 and is protected under the Endangered Species Act of 1973.
The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to conserve, protect and enhance fish, wildlife, plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people.