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Honduran Emerald

Central America

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Amazilia luciae

Endangered

It is threatened by habitat loss, and deforestation.

Named for its glittering blue-green throat and upper chest, the endangered Honduran Emerald is this country's only endemic bird. It's also one of few birds endemic to any country in Central America. Unfortunately, 90 percent of the emerald's original habitat has been lost to agriculture and degraded by cattle grazing. What remains occurs only in isolated patches of a few acres each. This habitat loss has caused precipitous declines in the bird's population.

In 2005, ABC supported the creation of the Honduran Emerald Reserve in the Aguan Valley—the first protected area for the species. However, a recent road improvement project will allow greater exploitation and more rapid loss of remaining habitat on private lands. As mitigation for the new road, an agreement has been made to increase the protected area by almost 2,000 acres.