NATURE takes you to the deepest enclaves of the Amazon for a first-hand look at macaws.
Everyone loves macaws. Playful, intelligent, beautiful, they are the stars of parrot parks and zoos, and the cherished pets of devoted owners around the world. All of which makes them prime targets for poachers, who can make enormous profits from illegal sales of the birds. Thousands are smuggled from the wild each year, and many die in the process.
In the forests of South America, several species of macaw are severely endangered. But there is hope on the horizon. Dr. Charlie Munn, a wealthy American who is also a leading ornithologist and world expert on parrots, has begun a campaign to promote eco-tourism as a means of saving the birds. Employing former poachers as conservationists, and providing locals with the means to start and maintain a trade in tourism instead of smuggling, he’s betting that instead of buying birds, their fans will pay to see them in the wild.
NATURE’s The Real Macaw offers bird lovers the rare opportunity to enjoy these beautiful birds in their natural habitats rather than in pet stores and cages.
Online content for The Real Macaw was originally posted February 2004.