Brazilian Land Purchase Doubles Protected Area for Bird Once Thought Extinct

Photo: Ciro Ginez Albano
One of the few photos ever taken of a female Stresmann's Bristlefront, one of the world's rarest birds. Photo: Ciro Ginez Albano

The purchase of a 479-acre property in eastern Brazil has almost doubled the size of the Stresemann’s Bristlefront Reserve established in 2007 by American Bird Conservancy and in-country partner Fundação Biodiversitas. The new acquisition, which abuts the existing reserve, includes untouched, humid Atlantic forest, one of Brazil’s most rapidly disappearing habitats, and will boost protection of the critically endangered Stresemann’s Bristlefront and other endangered birds, such as the Red-browed Parrot, Hook-billed Hermit, Banded Cotinga, and Bahia Tyrannulet.


“The bristlefront was thought to be extinct, disappearing for more than 50 years before being rediscovered in 1995 near Una, in Bahia province,” said David Wiedenfeld, American Bird Conservancy’s Assistant Director of International Programs. “Subsequent searches failed to find any more birds there, but a small population was later discovered at a site in Bandeira County on the border of Minas Gerais and Bahia. The area is threatened by deforestation for cattle ranching and fires, making the creation of the reserve by American Bird Conservancy and Biodiversitas critical for the survival of the species.”