Guyana gets its first Important Bird Area
Almost a decade ago, the Guyana Amazon Tropical Birds Society proposed a number of Important Bird Areas (IBAs) in Guyana, including South Central Rupununi, where it was proposed that Red Siskins should be protected.
Since our inception, SRCS have collected a wide range of data on the Red Siskin, including population estimates, their range and male to female ratio. Using this information, this year SRCS were able to validate South Central Rupununi as an IBA due to the number of sighted Red Siskins pairs.
Birdlife International were then able to confirm South Central Rupununi as the first IBA in Guyana. This brings international recognition to the South Rupununi. SRCS now hopes to provide more formal protection for the Red Siskin within the IBA by working with communities to make it a "safe zone".
SRCS also aims to work with other NGOs in Rupununi and Guyana to help confirm other IBAs. It is hoped that the confirmation of South Central as an IBA will increase tourism to the area and also attract more researchers to study the surrounding wildlife.
Congratulations to the Red Siskin Research Teams, past and present, especially: Leroy Ignacio, Eon Gray, Chung Liu and Neal Millar. Good work guys!
Red Siskin Research Continues
Banding of Red Siskins continues from September 2019, thanks to funding from the Sustainable Wildlife Management Programme.
We first became interested in Red Siskins when they were discovered in the Rupununi in 2000. Since then we have run several research and conservation programmes, aiming to protect this endangered species.
Red Siskins were once thought to exist only in a small region of Venezuela, having been brought almost to extinction by the cage bird trade during the 19th century. When a small population was discovered in the South Rupununi, the SRCS became the guardians of the species.
The aim of this project is to continue banding the Red Siskin and to monitor their life cycle. The information gained from these projects will fill scientific gaps for the species and will subsequently be used to inform the design of conservation management plans.
This project has been previously funded by the Conservation Leadership Programme, the Global Environmental Foundation's Small Grants Programme and the Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund.