Golden-winged Warbler, Nicaragua


The Challenge

The Golden-winged Warbler is one of the most threatened, non-federally listed migratory bird species in North America. Without significant, immediate conservation action, the likelihood that this species will require protection under the Endangered Species Act is high.  It is well known that the loss and deterioration of wintering ground habitat for migratory birds, including Golden-winged Warblers is leading to their population decline.  Recent surveys have revealed that northern Nicaragua is one of the most important wintering locations for the species.


ABC Conservation Framework

Efforts to save this species comes under Safeguarding the Rarest within ABC's Conservation Framework
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Primary Birds Impacted

The principal focal species is the Golden-winged Warbler, but as the project expands, there is potential for habitat protection for the Golden-cheeked Warbler. The area is an important stop over and wintering site for dozens of neotropical migrant species including the Wood Thrush, Kentucky Warbler, and Hermit Warbler.  The vulnerable Highland Guan and Three-wattled Bellbird are positively affected by this project.



  • Reforest degraded or destroyed habitat, and increase habitat connectivity where possible
  • Plant trees within coffee plantations to develop shade-coffee habitat
  • Encourage local landowners to maintain forest understory to protect bird habitat

ABC Results

ABC Results Button Between June 2010 and June 2011, ABC implemented a project with the owners of the El Jaguar Reserve to improve and protect habitat for the Golden-winged Warbler. Results of the project include:
  • Planted 8200 trees on 14 neighboring farms
  • Conducted 6 reforestation and education workshops with 12 neighboring farms
  • Conducted education programs for 327 students at three schools, and conducted a migratory bird festival in local community
  • Conducted migratory bird monitoring via MOSI protocol at two sites at El Jaguar
  • Securing of 38 hectare addition to El Jaguar Reserve
ABC Results Button In 2011 and 2012, ABC has provided funding for the creation of two new nurseries. These nurseries will produce another 16,000 trees for planting between El Jaguar and the Yali Volcano Protected Area.


What Next?

What Next Button ABC and El Jaguar are developing plans to create a six mile long biological corridor from the El Jaguar Reserve to the Reserva Natural Volcan Yali to ensure habitat connectivity and protection for neotropical migrants such as the Golden-winged Warbler
What Next Button Expand reforestation efforts throughout the proposed corridor.
What Next Button Complete Golden-winged Warbler Wintering Ground Conservation Plan
What Next Button Continue Golden-winged Warbler research to determine winter home range and female habitat use.

Partners: This project is being implemented by the El Jaguar Private Reserve, in association with the Alianza para las Areas Silvestres.

Supporters: US Fish and Wildlife Service via the Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation Act, Western Hemisphere Migratory Species Initiative (Organization of American States), State of Pennsylvania through the Southern Wings Programs. Other supporters of El Jaguar Reserve include the Institute for Bird Populations, and The Nature Conservancy.