Support the BirdLife Preventing Extinctions Program

December 4, 2012 by  
Filed under Features

Operating in more than one hundred countries and territories, BirdLife International is a global partnership of conservation organizations working tirelessly to protect birds and their habitats. This includes working with communities to promote sustainability in the use of natural resources and create awareness of the importance of biodiversity. In addition to being delightful to observe, birds are vital indicators of environmental health and by focusing on preserving the natural habitats they thrive in, other wildlife and people are also benefited.

As the name suggests, the BirdLife Preventing Extinctions Program has the goal of preventing species on the brink of extinction from disappearing. The organization notes that in the last thirty years, 21 bird species have become extinct and currently 197 species have been classified as Critically Endangered. When compared with the natural rate of bird extinction of one species per century, it’s clear that positive action is called for. BirdLife started monitoring bird species around the world many years ago, and has a substantial database on every species that is threatened with extinction, as well as what conservation measures need to be taken to protect them. But putting plans into action calls for cooperation and resources and BirdLife relies on charitable donations like-minded conservationists to help with this important work.

To give each species the attention it deserves, BirdLife is recruiting and appointing Species Champions – companies, institutions and individuals that are committed to helping prevent bird extinctions. Renowned naturalist Sir David Attenborough is the appointed Species Champion for Araripe Manakin, endemic to the Araripe uplands of the Brazilian state of Ceará. Other Species Champions include actor Steve Martin (Giant and White-shouldered Ibis) and HRH Prince Albert II of Monaco (Northern Bald Ibis).

Species Guardians are appointed in the region where conservation measures need to be taken. These individuals or organizations will be actively involved in promoting conservation, while monitoring the status of the species, and tracking the implementation and effectiveness of programs put in place. All the information relating to conservation efforts for the 197 critically endangered species is displayed on the website of BirdLife International, along with details on how to get involved in the BirdLife Preventing Extinctions Program.

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