|Date||17 Jun 2011|
The Mao (forest honeyeater) is a rare and highly threatened bird. It is endemic to Samoa and is therefore not found anywhere else in the world. Currently the Mao is classified as Endangered by the IUCN, or World Conservation Union. This means that unless urgent action is taken, these unique birds have a very high risk of going extinct in the near future.
Despite their endangered status there is very limited knowledge of what is causing the decline of this species. There is currently no published study of the biology or ecology of this species. Urgent research is needed to determine what management strategies could halt their extinction.
This research program will investigate the breeding ecology and population biology of the endemic
Samoan honey eater the Mao. The project will characterise breeding parameters such as the phenology, nesting success rates and collect information on sources of nest failure and mortality. This will enable the identification of major threats to the population during reproduction and determine the likely efficacy of predator control as a conservation tool.
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