Cherry-throated Tanager (Nemosia rourei)
Mohamed bin Zayed Species project number 13257803
The Critically Endangered Cherry-throated Tanager is endemic of the montane Atlantic Forest of Espírito Santo state in Brazil. In the last years SAVE Brasil has been working in partnership with the Government lobbying for the creation of public and private protected areas in the region. The project is also engaging communities to bring pride to the local people for housing this unique species.
Protected Area Creation
On the contrary of what was expected and planned, the government of the state of Espírito Santo did not sign the decree for the creation of the Wildlife Refuge in 2014. But, for 2015 the state government agreed to create a protected area within the core distribution of the Cherry-throated Tanager. A total of 5,000 hectares of the area will be declared a Wildlife Refuge and a local private company will transform their property in a private reserve with 1,630 hectares . The private reserve and the Wildlife Refuge together will encompass 6,630 hectares of preserved forests.
Besides the proposal for the creation of protected areas, SAVE Brasil, along with the partner NGO (RBMA - Reserva da Biosfera da Mata Atlântica), has been seeking the recognition of this area as an UNESCO Natural Heritage Site and/or Global Geopark, due to its biologic importance, the presence of expressive forest remnants and the necessity of an integrated and participative management of these protected territories.
SAVE Brasil evaluated the birdwatching potential in the Cherry-throated Tanager’s range and the commitment from the professionals involved in birdwatching towards environmental conservation. Part of the results from this consultancy was presented during the symposium held in October 21st 2014 in Vitoria (capital of the state): Symposium: “Birdwatching Tourism in the Mountainous Region of Espirito Santo and its interface with the Conservation of Biodiversity and Income Generation”. The symposium was organized by SAVE Brasil in partnership with SEBRAE, which is a private entity that is very well known in Brazil as a reference on the promotion of sustainability in small businesses. For this event 95 people were invited and 60-70% of them were identified during the diagnostic undertaken in September. 59 participants attended the symposium, including 2 Government Secretaries (Environment and Tourism), who along with the directors of SEBRAE and SAVE Brasil gave the official opening statement for the event. The symposium had 6 speakers between SAVE Brasil’s staff members, birdwatching guides from the state and members of partner NGOs. Overall, it was extremely successful in divulging the importance of the conservation of the Cherry-throated Tanager. However, it was little effective in raising awareness of the governmental organs concerning the conclusion of the process for the creation of the Wildlife Refuge.
Even though the area of occurrence of the Cherry-throated Tanager is of great conservation significance in the Atlantic Forest, this is not known by the local community. The species is being used as a symbol for biodiversity (flagship species) of the region in an attempt to raise pride on the people regarding the presence of a rich biodiversity and of a unique species that live in their area. We already benefited 300 local residents (185 children and 125 adults) with activities of education and dissemination.
Project 13257803 location - Brazil, South America