Raptors, as top predators,  play a crucial role in maintaining healthy ecosystems and provide untold benefits to the environment, human health, and economies. In the Caribbean, raptors are the region’s main top land predators, and like many other raptors around the world, they are in decline. The island of Puerto Rico is home to several raptor species and subspecies that are found nowhere else in the world. Our work to date focuses on saving the Critically Endangered Puerto Rican Sharp-shinned Hawk, and learning more about the the Puerto Rican Broad-winged Hawk subspecies. 

Our Solutions

Three nestling Puerto Rican Sharp-shinned Hawks being reared

Captive Rearing and Release

Pulling some eggs from wild nests allows us to double nesting productivity. 

Two biologists in a dense forest looking up; one of them is using binoculars

Nest Searching

Finding a Puerto Rican Sharp-shinned Hawk nest can be a challenge. But these raptors' aerial courtship displays help make our job a little bit easier. 

Measuring a Puerto Rican Sharp Shinned Hawk egg

Treating Nests and Young

Parasitic nest flies, known as botflies, lay their eggs in bird nests. The larvae burrow beneath the skin of the nestlings to feed on their tissue and flesh. Without treatment, these flies can cause high nestling mortality.

Biologists band a Puerto Rican Sharp-shinned Hawk

Hawk Banding, Tagging, and Tracking

Banding and placing transmitters on hawks allows us to study their movement, better understand individual survivability, and learn more about their behavior.

The Puerto Rico Field team gathered at a conference

Capacity Building and Education

Hiring and training locals is a large component of our conservation work and the key for success.

Broad-winged Hawk in Flight

Broad-winged Hawk Research

Puerto Rico is home to an endemic subspecies of the Broad-winged Hawk. We are working to learn all we can about the behavior, habitat needs, and threats that this raptor faces on the island—an important first step in ensuring its long-term conservation.

Learn More

Four biologists posing in front of a mural of a Puerto Rican Sharp-shinned Hawk

Meet Our Team

Our all-female field team is made up of four biologists from the U.S. and Puerto Rico.

Puerto Rican Sharp-shinned Hawk nestling cupped in biologist's hand

Meet our Partners

Our work wouldn't be possible without the help of our invaluable local partners.

Adult Puerto Rican Sharp-shinned Hawk perches with food on a branch

Meet the Raptors

Learn more about the different bird of prey species we are working to save in Puerto Rico.

Nestling Puerto Rican Sharp-shinned Hawk in hand

Daria Taylor

Conserving Raptors in Puerto Rico

Our Impact

  • 9 years of raptor data collected

  • 26 Puerto Rican Sharp-shinned Hawks raised in captivity

  • 25 Puerto Rican Sharp-shinned Hawks reintroduced 

  • 48 Puerto Rican Sharp-shinned Hawks successfully fledged into the wild under our management

  • 36 wild individuals observed


A closeup of a Puerto Rican Sharp-shinned Hawk looking over its shoulder towards the camera

Hana Weaver

Conserving Raptors in Puerto Rico

You Can Help

  • Donate Today. Even a small donation can make a big difference. 
  • Adopt a raptor.  You'll help provide food, enrichment, travel, and medical care for one of our raptor ambassadors at the World Center for Birds of Prey. These hard-working members of our staff inspire thousands of people to engage in conserving birds of prey!
  • Plant tree species that provide good nesting habitat such as Caimitillo Trees
  • Encourage the production of shade grown coffee by purchasing locally grown products
  • Shop sustainably. When buying bags, shoes, souvenirs or other articles, be sure they are not made of wildlife products and that, if made of natural products, they are sustainably harvested.
  • Travel Sustainably. Traveling with local companies that support conservation, visiting countries that most need tourism money, and using your travel  as an opportunity to meet and get to know locals are great ways to support conservation. 
  • Learn and Teach. Learn as much as you can about hawks and other birds of prey then share what you have learned with friends and family.