Date: 9/28/17 10:46 am
From: Kyle Kittelberger (via carolinabirds Mailing List) <carolinabirds...>
Subject: Re: hurricane devastation
Hey everyone,
Thought I'd post a follow up for those that were curious about the fate of some of the endemic birds in the Caribbean. There is at least some good news now regarding the Barbuda Warbler. While a preliminary initial survey as Derb reported had failed to find any birds and it was feared that Irma may have been an extinction event for this species, a recent survey found some warblers. See below for more. Its not yet clear how hard the population was hit, but at least there is now some hope for this warbler.

Hopefully we will hear more in the coming days about the status of other Caribbean birds like the Imperial and Red-necked Parrots on Dominica and the critically endangered Bahama Oriole. 
Cheers,Kyle KittelbergerRaleigh, NC

On Tuesday, September 26, 2017 2:09 PM, "Adams, Jamie" <carolinabirds...> wrote:

Some good news, many Kirtland's winter on Eleuthera and I know that island seems to have had been missed both times (Irma and Maria).  They only suffered tropical storm winds at worst.  I wonder how the Flamingos of Inagua have fared.  Also the recently split Inagua Woodstar.  It seems Inagua got smashed.

Seems like once the mess is cleaned up the best way to infuse money into the local economies is to visit them.  For some of the islands, it may take a while before that is feasible or safe.

Jamie Adams
Wilmington, NC

-----Original Message-----
From: <carolinabirds-request...> [mailto:<carolinabirds-request...>] On Behalf Of Nate Dias
Sent: Tuesday, September 26, 2017 1:48 PM
To: CarolinaBirds <carolinabirds...>
Cc: Derb Carter <derbc...>
Subject: Re: hurricane devastation


BirdsCarribean has a relief fund set up to accept donations to help birds recover from the recent hurricanes:

Also - there has been a wealth of discussion on BIRDCHAT recently
about this issue.  People have pointed out a lengthy list of endemics
- for example Adelaide's Warbler, Blue-headed Hummingbird, Plumbeous Warbler, Forest Thrush, Brown Trembler ,etc. - that are at risk of extinction from the hurricanes.  Not just from the immediate storm effects, but the long-term loss of vegetation, food, and cover (to
hide from predators).  Imagine being a hummingbird with zero flowers
left on your island.    Or a frugivore with no fruit in sight.

You can read recent BIRDCHAT messages online here:

Besides island endemics I worry about species like Kirtland's Warbler
- where a lot of the population was already on wintering grounds in
places like the southern Bahamas and Turks and Cacos.  Same goes for
Wayne's Black-throated Green Warblers.

Nathan Dias - Charleston, SC

On Tue, Sep 26, 2017 at 1:09 PM, Derb Carter <derbc...> wrote:
> I have been trying to learn more about the impacts of hurricanes Irma
> and Maria on already imperiled birds on the affected Caribbean
> islands.  First, our thoughts should be with the humans devastated by
> these storms.  But the toll on birds has been significant and I fear
> even possibly final for some birds.  Many of the islands are small and
> essentially all the trees blown down or all the leaves blown off.
> Normally verdant forests on hillsides are brown with no green
> vegetation.  Individual birds that may have survived will have little
> to sustain them.  Communication infrastructure has been devastated and
> information is hard to come by, and only now beginning to trickle out.
> The endangered Barbuda Warbler is only found on Barbuda.  A
> preliminary survey of the small island from which all humans have been
> evacuated could not locate any warblers.  Dominica is only 30 miles
> north to south and 10 miles wide but has two endemic parrots, the
> spectacular Imperial Parrot (pop. ~ 200) and Red-necked Parrot (pop. ~
> 1200).  I think Dominica is the only country that features a parrot on
> its national flag, and was working hard to develop an ecotourism
> economy based on its preserved forests.  I have yet to find any information on the fate of the parrots.
> Reports are the Puerto Rican Parrots in the captive breeding facility
> have survived, taken care of during the storm by a young woman.  I
> have heard no reports of the wild populations.  Fortunately efforts
> had established three parrot populations, increasing resiliency to
> hurricanes but the entire island took a major hit and the largest El
> Yunque population took the brunt of the storm.  El Yunque is also the
> stronghold of the endemic Elfin Woods Warbler.
> In April, a Carolina Bird Club trip to Cuba observed thousands of
> American Flamingoes feeding in the salt lagoons at Cayo Coco on the
> north shore of Cuba.  This area took a direct hit from Irma.  I have
> seen video from Cayo Coco of hundreds of dead and a few crippled
> flamingoes.  This area is also the only site for Bahama Mockingbird on
> Cuba and one small barrier island is the only site for a small
> population of the Cuban subspecies of Thick-billed Vireo.
> I am trying to determine the best organization(s) working to assist
> the local organizations that are working to do what can be done to
> help recover the birds.  If I find one to recommend, I will post.  Of
> course, any assistance to help the people recover will help,
> especially in a country like Dominica which has a population of 70,000
> and no mother country to turn to.
> Derb Carter
> Chapel Hill, NC
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