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Featured Project

November 14, 2018

baby macaws finding homes

Refining and improving techniques to increase survival of macaw chicks using foster macaw parents in the wild


Scarlet Macaw populations are declining due to illegal trade and habitat loss. Unfortunately, macaws lay 2-4 eggs, but raise only one or two chicks, letting the others starve to death.

Last year, this team tested placing newborn chicks in foster nests to save 11 chicks from starvation in Peru. This year they hope to build off their progress and refine the techniques to make them better and simpler, and to encourage other parrot conservation projects to use these techniques to aid the recovery of endangered macaws.

Featured Results

Crowdfunded scientific discoveries

How long have animals used these caves?

Last August, Wayne State Ph.D. student Ryan Shell set out to use radiocarbon dating and pollen analysis to determine the age of fossils he discovered in the caves of public city parks around Dayton, Ohio.

He documented his process in lab notes posted of the various raccoon, snake, and bobcat bones he found. In his final results, Ryan reported that of the original 12 cave sites he visited, only 4 were of any significant age. Among them, he found snake, wolf, bobcat, snowshoe hare remains dating back to the Pleistocene. Two sites have confirmed human presence: one with a partial human skeleton around 1,450 years old, and one with stone tool fragments.

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