Monday, April 27, 2009

$14M effort announced to save rare bird

A major effort to save the critically endangered Hawaiian crow, one of the rarest forest birds in the world, was announced Friday by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
"The fact that the species is extinct in the wild means that its former habitat is no longer able to support the population for whatever reason," said biologist Jeff Burgett, who is charged with the recovery for the Fish and Wildlife Service. "Unless we change it in ways that are better for the bird, it has no suitable habitat."

Their habitat has been affected by the introduction of nonnative predators and threats such as feral cats, pigs, mongoose and cattle, which can destroy the vegetation of the forest and spread disease.

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