Hornbill Research Foundation
Mission: To continue and expand further research initiatives into hornbills and related topics, increase awareness of forests and the wildlife within them, encourage the study of natural ecosystems among scientists, researchers, students and school children, and set up a centre for the exchange of information and training in research into hornbills at both national and international levels.
Species: Rhinoceros, Helmeted and Great hornbills
Location: Western and Southern Thailand
Support started: 2002
Donating: $450 towards the montoring of our 3 hornbill families.
Background: The Hornbill Research Foundation was set up following a Thai university project initiating research into the ecology of hornbills in 1978. The Hornbill Research Foundation now conducts research into the biological and ecological aspects of wild hornbills in Western and Southern Thailand.
Overall the project aims to subsidize local villagers in their determination and efforts to conserve hornbills, to study the biological and ecological aspects of hornbills, which are currently on the verge of extinction and to allow villagers to collect biological and ecological data of hornbills for research purposes, and to monitor and secure long-term hornbill populations in the area.
Achievements: Action for the Wild sponsors families of rhinoceros, great and wreathed hornbills. Our donation helps to employ local people to collect hornbill biological data, providing them with earnings that are obtained in a sustainable manner. Our donation also allows researchers to monitor the hornbill populations and secure their populations in the area over the long term. In Southern and Western Thailand, villagers used to make extra money by selling hornbill chicks at markets. Nowadays, these same villagers get their money by looking after the very nests they poached. The local research assistants help to produce reports of their hornbill family. This contributes to raising awareness of hornbill conservation and involving the local communities in active conservation work.
Every year, Action for the Wild receives details on the condition of the adopted hornbills, the location of their nests and the species and characteristics of the tree in which the nest is located. In addition to this breeding information, data is collected on the types of food brought to the nest by the males to feed the broods. These reports enable scientists to compare information collected between the different families and look for interesting patterns.
Combining information from the different types of data collected will provide an overall picture of the behaviour and ecology of the hornbills, and hopefully assist in determining indicators of reproductive success and high survival rate. By continuing to support the work of the Hornbill Research Foundation, we are contributing to their conservation efforts to ensure that hornbills survive in the future.
Future objectives: For 2011, the project will continue to monitor our hornbill families. They will also continue to promote hornbill conservation and train villagers as nature guides, so they can earn an income in a more sustainable way.
Rhinocerous hornbill picture © Hornbill Research Foundation
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