Indonesian Parrot Project

Working together to protect the parrots of Indonesia.

Only 22 of these rare Abbotti Cockatoos exist in the wild.

The Abbotti Cockatoo (C. sulphurea abbotti) is found only on one tiny island in the Masalembu Archipelago. Originally discovered by D.L. Abbott in 1907 up until the 1980s there were large numbers of birds. At one point, the Abbottis had reached a low of five cockatoos, making them the rarest cockatoo. From a low of 5, with the combined efforts of IPP and KKI, and your support, they have steadily fought their way up to 22 cockatoos—still a very dangerous number, but in the world of parrot conservation, a very encouraging one.

Will you help them?

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How we are making a difference

Our work is focused on four main areas: conservation, rehabilitation & release, education and economic development.

Project Abbotti

Abbotti cockatoos (Cacatua sulphurea abbotti) were and still are, one of the rarest and most threatened cockatoos in the world. They are now only found on Masakambing Island in the Masalembu Archipelago located deep in the Java Sea.

The non-stop decline in their population reached a low of 5 individuals in 1997 and they seemed on the road to extinction. In October 2015 during our visit to Masakambing, we did not conduct a formal census but we estimated the current population to be 17 to 22 individuals.

Kembali Bebas Rehabilitation & Release Centre

Over the last 12 years, Indonesian Parrot Project & PPS Seram has released over 1200 birds back to their forest homes. On October 25, 2015, nine Seram cockatoos were released back into the wild.

During our October ecotour, our guests were very excited to be able to witness this monumental event for the cockatoos. The release cage was deep within the confines of the National Park and we huddled together in blinds waiting to see what would happen.

CAP Education Program

The ability of measures such as interdiction of bird trapping and smuggling and the use of ecotourism to provide alternative means of support for former bird trappers can have only a circumscribed impact on the conservation of endangered species of parrots.

A much more meaningful approach would be to change the attitudes and economic conditions which culminate in bird trapping as an economic necessity which is socially acceptable. To do this, we must target not only the adults in the villages, but especially the children – the future generations – and get them directly involved.

Economic Development for Local Communities

The Indonesian Parrot Project is proud to be partnering with Planet Indonesia to create sustainable development for the local communities in the areas where our projects are located.

IPP facilitates a participatory process to design and establish small business groups that directly address the community’s needs and operate based on local values, traditions, and customs. Planet Indonesia’s experience will provide skill training, mentoring, services, and motivation for communities to realize the sustainable profit-making possibilities within their environment.

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Message from Joan Tilke and a Tribute from IPP

Joan and Gerry

Joan and Gerry

My first encounter with a Moluccan cockatoo was at the San Diego zoo in 1971, when “King Tut” was the greeter at the entrance. He had been wild caught by Frank “Bring ‘em back alive” Buck in the 1920’s (Tut is credited with being the longest-living cockatoo at 103 yrs). But my interest in parrots went back further, to growing up in England and getting my first budgie at age 10. Nipper was playful and tame, and she survived the lean war years, when budgie seed was very difficult to obtain.

Later, I met and married Gerhard, whose nickname was Gerry. When Gerry and I were married, we had another budgie, a cockatiel, an Edward’s lorikeet ( a rescue from an alley market in Hong Kong) and an Australian Galah. The Lorikeet and the Galah were with us in Kuwait when it was invaded by Iraq in 1990 – luckily they were taken in by local friends and we retrieved them in Amman, Jordan, in 1991.

In 1995 we acquired Sammy a Moluccan cockatoo; Sammy was hatched in Oregon and weaned in 1995 at five months old. Nearly twenty-one years later, she is still my companion. Around 1998 I read an article in “Bird Talk” magazine by Dr. David Waugh (Edinburgh zoo and Loro Bird Parque in Tenerife) about the efforts of Project Bird Watch (now called the Indonesian Parrot Project ) to help save the parrots of Indonesia, especially the endangered Moluccan cockatoo of Seram.

Dr. Stewart Metz contacted me soon after and I started working on some batik projects for the cause. I had learned the craft at the Batik Centre in the Indonesian Embassy in Singapore, where we lived for a while. The Batik Centre displayed traditional batik, held art shows and gave professional instruction to students. Gerry was a great help in preparing my paintings for display on the Project Bird Watch website [see accompanying photo of Joan and Gerry] Before “discovering” batik, I studied fine art extensively in England, Canada and later in the U.S. and Hong Kong.

Gerry passed away in 2012, and I have retired from painting, but we thoroughly enjoyed the years we were involved with projects for Dr. Metz.

Note from the Associate Director:

Joan is quite modest—her batiks are breath-taking and one can hardly appreciate their complexity of color in a website. Joan allowed us to sell much of her work, and generously gave any profits to us to help support our work in Seram. Her designs appear on t-shirts, greeting cards and other items, but her masterworks are the oversized comforters for which she made the batik design. The batik design was then put onto comforters by renowned Bali batik artists. Although we can describe Joan’s artistic products, we cannot quantify Joan’s dedication to the cause of endangered cockatoos. She is a very special person.

Eco Tour Fall 2016

IPP’s 2016 eco-expedition will take place in September. It will include visits to Bali, Masalembu, East Papua, and Seram. It will be a rugged trip. We are putting together costs and final itinerary now.

If you have any questions about this trip or questions in general about travel to Indonesia, please contact Bonnie Zimmermann.

 

An incredible photo taken by Mandy Andrea on the island of Batanta in West Papua on an eco-expedition.

Want to do more for Indonesian cockatoos & parrots?

The growing support for Indonesian Parrot Project has been truly exciting. We invite YOU to become a member of Indonesian Parrot Project and join us in this unique opportunity to directly help the native Indonesian cockatoos and parrots.

Get Involved with IPP Today!

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