Avian Expert Articles

“The Macaw Project” Documentary Takes Flight

The internet has become an embedded force for many things since its worldwide adoption. It has become a powerful economic base, as well as an unmatched forum for knowledge. There is little doubt as to the bad that has occurred since its acceptance. But there can be no denial of the extraordinary good that has come to fruition through its pathways. We can list many examples. We could, in fact, do it all day long. Your ability to gain a wealth of information that applies to your bird, even from Lafeber.com, is an amazing draw from the resources of the internet. Here’s one story for you.

Several years ago, the Tambopata Macaw Project, located in southeastern Peru, was formed as a long-term research forum to study the impacts of the changing ecology of the region and how such changes impacted the macaws and parrots found there. One employed individual was George Olah, whose main goal was to learn the history of the native macaws in the lowland Amazonian rainforests. During his time with the project, he was profoundly moved enough to change his path of study to that of Conservation Biology. His new goal was to achieve a PhD so that he might be able to make important strides in conservation management for the area. It was his realization that human interference was drastically changing the environment that the Macaw lived in.

Documentary Takes Flight

One thing that Mr Olah became interested in was the creation of a documentary that would spur public awareness of the issues the region faced where the macaw was concerned. He involved two filmmakers, a Hungarian zoologist by the name of Cintia Garai, and fellow Hungarian filmmaker, Attila Dávid Molnár. The three interested individuals took to the internet to initiate a crowdfunded effort to produce the documentary. The end results provided the documentary crew with well over 100% of the requested funds needed. That’s the power of the internet at work. With the acquired monies made available to them, the three set out to create The Macaw Project.

The Macaw Project is a first of its kind documentary in that it is filmed from the perspective of the researchers. The film is intended to be used as a platform to inform the public and bird-lovers interested in the preservation of these magnificent parrots and macaws. In it, new ideas and technologies are explored and explained, such as the use of drones to easily see birds from overhead that would be impossible to see from the ground of the dark rainforest. During the film, local communities dependent on ecotourism are visited, as well as a research center. Other locales include inaccessible locations (to tourists) that are explored in their full and undisturbed beauty. Of interest within the film are the spotlighted dangers posed to the environment by illegal gold mining, tree-logging, and other endangering and exploitative industries. Of course, the dangers of illegal poaching are seen as well.

The 26-minute Macaw Project documentary is finished and is being shown at the Australian National University (ANU). There is hope to air the film on Australian television to help increase awareness of the dangers to our macaws and parrots of the Amazonian region found within the scope of the film. The filmmakers are also hopeful to achieve a theater experience that could further increase the awareness of the endangered birds. This could go much further in that once viewers are made aware of the dangers, they may be moved to help in a myriad of assistive ways.

We’d like to encourage your further exploration of the preservation of our wild birds by use of the internet. You can start here. We hope that soon, The Macaw Project film will be available to be seen by everyone! We wish the filmmakers luck in the furtherance of their intent.

You can view the trailer of The Macaw Project here.

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