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  • The San Juan Daily Star

Bayer Corp., DNER cooperate to boost recovery of Puerto Rican parrot

A program to facilitate the recovery of the Puerto Rican parrot population will take place at Río Abajo State Forest in Utuado.

By John McPhaul

Last September, agricultural company Bayer Crop Science and the Puerto Rico Department of Natural and Environmental Resources (DNER) formalized a collaborative agreement through a memorandum of understanding to support the Puerto Rican parrot recovery program.

The program will take place at Río Abajo State Forest in Utuado and will run through September 2026.

Through the agreement, the DNER will provide Bayer with seeds of the forest’s native trees, which the company will germinate and harvest in the tree horticulture greenhouse that Bayer uses for such community extension efforts and initiatives.

The efforts are coordinated by Bayer’s Borrando Huella Creando Hábitat (Erasing Footprint, Creating Habitat) Reforestation Program, which is led by agronomist Francisco Muñiz, an agriculture research specialist at Bayer Crop Science Puerto Rico.

“Through this initiative, we are collaborating in the production of trees, not just to feed the Puerto Rican parrot but also for the health, biodiversity and reforestation of the Río Abajo Forest,” Muñiz said. “Our role in this collaboration consists of planting and producing trees and later supporting the department in its reforestation efforts at the forest. As Bayer employees and Puerto Rican citizens, we care about the environment and about Puerto Rico. We thank Tanya Martínez, leader of the Puerto Rican parrot recovery program, the entire team at the department, and Secretary Rafael Machargo for the opportunity to continue collaborating.”

The environmental initiative – the fourth one that the company has conducted since the beginning of 2021 – was born out of the desire of both entities to increase the parrot recovery program’s effectiveness, in addition to the shared commitment to support sustainability, conservation, restoration and reforestation efforts in Puerto Rico. In the long term, the initiative seeks to establish an ecological corridor of reforested areas from Utuado to Maricao for the Puerto Rican parrot habitat, as well as increase the parrot’s numbers and, eventually, get it off the endangered species list.

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