PADF Receives Disney Conservation Grant to Protect Brazilian Parrot

Leia em português                                                                         (Photos: PADF/Arnaldo Belotto)

Washington, D.C. (April 22, 2017) — The Pan American Development Foundation (PADF) has been awarded a grant from the Disney Conservation Fund (DCF) to support the Wildlife Research and Environmental Education (SPVS), a leading Brazilian environmental conservation organization, to protect the Red-Tailed Amazon Parrot, a threatened species in Brazil. This grant is part of the Fund’s focus on reversing the decline of threatened wildlife around the world.

The red-tailed Amazon parrot lives in the largest remaining area of the Atlantic Forest, listed among the five most important areas for the conservation of biodiversity on the planet.

“Protecting species is vital to maintaining biodiversity,” says Luisa Villegas, Deputy Senior Programs Director at PADF. “With support from Disney, our partners on the ground in Brazil are able to ensure the Red-Tailed Amazon Parrot population is healthy, while also working to educate the public.”

SPVS will conduct a census to determine the health of the parrot population on the southern coast of São Paulo state. This includes monitoring nesting sites and compiling data on the illegal trade of parrots, which is a major problem in the region. The project will train local forest rangers about threats to the parrot’s habitat. Rangers will pass these lessons on to visitors of the Atlantic Forest through interpretive programs. 

In addition, SPVS will raise awareness in local communities about the importance of preserving the species and its habitat through events and interactive presentations for students. Educational programs will target schools in the municipality of Ilha Comprida, São Paulo, an area with a large concentration of parrot breeding sites.

“We are trying to eliminate the threat of extinction,” says Elenise Sipinski, project coordinator at SPVS and lead researcher on the project. “That means monitoring parrot nests and roosting sites. But it also means going to schools and teaching children about the important role that each species plays in a fragile ecosystem. We’re trying to create a new generation of conservationists.”

The Disney Conservation Fund focuses on reversing the decline of wildlife and increasing the time kids spend in nature. Since its inception in 1995, DCF has provided approximately $65 million to support conservation programs in 115 countries. Projects were selected to receive awards based on their efforts to study wildlife, protect habitats and develop community conservation and education programs in critical ecosystems around the world.

For information on Disney’s commitment to conserve nature and a complete list of grant recipients, visit www.disney.com/conservation.