Land Purchase and construction of a research station

We are extremely exited to announce that FCAT purchased 164ha of primary forest for conservation inside the Reserva Mache-Chindul (Mache-Chindul Reserve)!! Untitled

The reserve has a lek of the long-wattled umbrellabird, along with many other endangered species of bird and primate. We started building a scientific station that will support our local community engaged research project and also national and international researchers and students. We expect to have this ready by June 2019, everyone is welcome to visit and collaborate with our projects!

On August 17th at midday  we will have a big welcome party to everyone interested in coming!


Photo by: Luis E. Carrasco

Lush Charity Pot grant

FCAT received a grant from the LUSH Charity Pot for the project: “Connecting local youths to nature through the study and protection of a threatened rainforest lake”. We will focus on the importance of Cube Lake (Laguna de Cube) in the Esmeraldas province of Ecuador for avian diversity while teaching students ages 11-16 how to use macroinvertebrates to asses water quality.

We have held our first workshop with youths that live close to the lake in close collaboration with the Environmental Ministry (Ministerio del Ambiente) – it was a total success! We will continue implementing these workshops with different groups of youths of the area all year long.

National Geographic grant to study the Banded ground-cuckoo

We are very excited to announce that FCAT was recently awarded a grant to study the endangered Banded ground-cuckoo through the National Geographic Species Recovery Program.


The banded ground-cuckoo Neomorphus radiolosus is an under- studied species of terrestrial bird. The species is endemic to the Chocó Biogeographic Zone in South America and is categorized by the IUCN as Endangered (EN). Habitat loss, habitat fragmentation and hunting are major drivers of this species decline. In this project, FCAT will: (1) Provide key information on current population size, demographic trends, range and degree of protection; (2) Develop a coordinated regional ground- cuckoo conservation and monitoring network; (3) Strengthen conservation knowledge and ecotourism capacity in key reserves; and, (4) Increase local research and conservation capacity.

Stay tuned for more news!

Photos by Murray Cooper.


Ecuadorian Ornithological Meeting – 2018

In August, three FCAT members– Domingo Cabrera, Jorge Olivo, and Luis Carrasco– traveled to present at the annual Ecuadorian Ornithological Meeting (REO) in Arenillas.

Luis gave a talk on how deforestation and fragmentation impacts the diversity of birds in REMACH, using a long term dataset. Domingo presented a poster on how seed dispersal by the endangered long-wattled umbrellabird increases species diversity of dispersed seeds. 

Jorge presented a poster on how habitat quality impacts frugivore visitation rates at the palm Oenocarpus bataua, and won a prize for outstanding poster presentation– congratulations Jorge!




Banded ground-cuckoo monitoring

The banded ground-cuckoo (Neomorphus radiolosus) is an endangered species that’s only found in the Chocó forests of Ecuador and Colombia. It’s incredibly elusive, which makes it difficult to study, and little is known about its biology. In July, members of FCAT, who have conducted some of the only studies on the banded ground-cuckoo, provided technical support for the project “Monitoring of the banded ground cuckoo” led by Fundación Jocotoco.