The Peregrine Fund has been awarded a $25,000 grant from the Disney Conservation Fund (DCF). The conservation grant recognizes The Peregrine Fund’s efforts to conserve the critically endangered Ridgway’s Hawk found in the Dominican Republic.
“The Ridgway’s Hawk is one of the most critically endangered raptors in the world with only about 300 individuals remaining,” says Dr. Richard Watson, Vice President and Director of International Programs. “This grant will help us to increase the hawk’s population size and distribution by improving breeding success and survival in the wild using wildlife management techniques we have developed over the last few years.”
Ridgway’s Hawks are endangered due to threats such as shooting, electrocution on power lines, habitat loss, and bot fly infestation of nestlings. The Peregrine Fund’s researchers have been working with local communities to reduce these threats. One initiative combines environmental education and community development to teach about the value of hawks while providing chicken coops to eliminate the perceived threat of hawks killing chickens. With the chickens protected, communities no longer feel the need to shoot the hawks.
Our biologists have also worked to expand the range of Ridgway’s Hawks to reduce the risk that a hurricane, fire or disease may wipe out the species when confined to one location. Once limited to just a small area in Los Haitises National Park, we have begun to expand their range to include a new population of hawks in the protected Punta Cana resort area.
The Disney Conservation Fund focuses on protecting wildlife and connecting kids and families with nature. Since its founding in 1995, DCF has provided more than $30 million to support conservation programs in 115 countries. Projects were selected to receive awards based upon their efforts to study wildlife, protect habitats and develop community conservation and education programs in critical ecosystems.
|Director of Community Engagement|