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Laura Klappenbach

Columbian Land Purchase Protects Cerulean Warblers

By February 24, 2013

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The cerulean warbler was once among the most abundant warblers in the Ohio and Missisippi River Valleys. The species' breeding range stretches over much of the eastern United States, and includes the Great Lakes, Appalachians and Central Hardwoods regions. Cerulean warblers spend the winter in South America.

During recent decades, ceruelean warblers have becoming quite scarce. Scientists estimate that since 1966, the population has declined nearly 70 percent. Deforestation and habitat destruction in all areas of the bird's range is the main factor behind the decline.

Conservationists have been working to protect cerulean warblers and other neotropical migrants. Their aim is to preserve vital habitat for the birds and in doing so stabilize and protect their populations. Most recently, The American Bird Conservancy and Fundacion ProAves purchased nine properties in Columbia along the western edge of the Pauxi Pauxi Reserve, a nature reserve established in 2007. This land expands the existing reserve and provides crucial winter habitat for cerulean warblers.

In addition to cerulean warblers, more than two dozen other neotropical migratory birds also benefit from the protected area, including Tennesee warblers, Canada warblers, American redstarts, northern waterthrushes and rose-breasted grosbeaks.

The newly protected land is located about 150 miles north of Bogota. It is located along the Magdalena River Valley west of the Andese Mountains. Much of the land surrounding land has been deforested, so the newly acquired protected area provides much needed habitat for migratory birds.

Photo © Mdf / Wikipedia.


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