Conservation and projects
The team at the Aviary are involved in a number of national, European and global captive breeding programs and many birds bred here have been returned to their native countries to take part in reintroduction projects. Our conservation fund, sustained by public donations collected from the Aviary Grotto, currently supports projects in Indonesia.
The Aviary's conservation fund supports the Begawan Foundation in Indonesia. The foundation was established in 1999, and the Rothschild's Mynah (Bali Starling) Conservation Project was its first initiative, aiming to save this critically endangered bird from extinction. Named after the zoologist Lord Walter Rothschild the Rothschild's Mynah bird (Leucopsar rothschildi) is endemic to the island of Bali, Indonesia.
Distributed across an extremely small wild range and with a tiny population which fell to just 6 birds in 2001, it's still suffering from illegal poaching for the cage bird trade. Having bred this species since 1971 at Waddesdon, in 2011, 4 females were bred here at our aviary and were sent to Bali to improve the genetic pool of the foundation's breeding programme.
The programme had the first of many successful releases into the wild in 2012. Find out more about the project and the Begawan Foundation.