A Word From The Associate Director: What Happened in 2014?

A Word From The Associate Director: What Happened in 2014?

Dec 1, 2014

Before getting on with a brief overview of 2014 , I want to point out that Bonnie Zimmermann is now our Director and I am Associate Director (or, as they say in politics, I have ‘stepped down’ as Director). This is largely because Bonnie has achieved some incredible things this year, and I thought it only fitting that she be primary leader, with me right behind continuing to be a nudge (8>}

You have not heard from us as much as we would have liked, although Bonnie has put some great videos and photos on Facebook. This paucity is largely because Masakambing Island (the only remaining home of the Abbotti cockatoos) is so remote, and difficult to reach, that trips to obtain primary data there are difficult and very expensive, thereby limiting the number of expeditions which we were able to make. Fortunately, we get frequent updates from our friends in Indonesia in Konservasi Kakatua Indonesia (KKI, ‘Conservation of Indonesian Cockatoos’), a collaborative group in Indonesia which we initiated in 2006 via our first trip to Masakambing.

Despite the logical difficulties, we consider 2014 to be a banner year for us and the abbotti cockatoos (Cacatua sulphurea abbotti) . I first became aware of their plight at a meeting of the Indonesian Institute of Science, where the rumor of their possible extinction was raised. Thanks in part to your support, we were able to fund an urgent trip to Masakambing Island. [Does that remind you of your support of the Moluccan cockatoo?] Yes, you CAN make a difference!!]. At one point, the Abbottis had reached a low of five cockatoos , making them the rarest cockatoo. This is not the place to review all that has taken place since then, and we will bring you up to date on the details of the recent developments. Suffice it to say that from a low of 5, with the combined efforts of IPP and KKI, and your support, they have steadily fought their way up to 20 cockatoos—still a very dangerous number, but in the world of parrot conservation, a very encouraging one.

So overall, 2014 was indeed a happy one for the abbottis, from them to us, and from us (we hope) to you. We hope that we will be able to report to you, an even better 2015.

With warm wishes from Stewart Metz, MD; Associate Director and Bonnie Zimmermann, Director

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