Videos of visit to Bahia in April 1995

In April 1995 I visited Brazil with Thomas Arndt, the then publisher and editor of the German "Papageien" magazine. I had met Thomas at the AFA convention in the USA in 1988. He was presenting there and I assisted him with his use of English. We became friends and I visited him in Germany in the following years and translated his Lexicon of Parrots into English for publication. The visit to Brazil in 1995 was his first visit to Brazil. I acted as his guide and arranged for us to visit the project for the Spix’s macaw in Bahia. At that point there was only one - a male - left in the wild. He flew around with a female Illiger’s Macaw. The conservation authority had erected a large aviary in the area with the objective of re-introducing a captive female into the wild to mate with the remaining wild male. They also had a small aviary nearby with a young captive-bred Spix’s macaw. When we went there we had the opportunity to film and photograph the wild male with the Illiger’s macaw. The captive female had been released and flew around in the area, returning every day to the small aviary where she was fed out of a bowl on the top. The captive-bred male remained in the aviary. It was not intended to release him. We filmed and photographed the female and the young male. I have now put the video along with a video about the Lear’s Macaw feeding source on the website. The quality is not perfect, but provide insights into the situation there. The female only met the wild male briefly and he unfortunately re-established his link to the Illiger’s macaw female. 

After we left we heard that the female had disappeared and a farm hand had reported he found her corpse. He did not return the corpse so we only have his word that he had found her. I have always suspected she was captured and sold on. She could be caught quite easily as she was used to feeding from a bowl left out. 

I wrote an article about the visit, which was published in "Just Parrots" later that year and which can be read in the Content section under "Spix’s macaws".  

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