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Bayer, DNER amend agreement to benefit Puerto Rican Parrot Recovery Program

The “Borrando Huella Sembrando Hábitat” (roughly “Erasing Footprints, Sowing Habitats”) (BHSH) Reforestation Team at the Bayer Crop Science site in Juana Díaz has delivered 10 nests to the Department of Natural and Environmental Resources (DNER) to support the Puerto Rican Parrot Recovery Program in time for this year’s mating season.

The donation amends a collaborative agreement formalized through a memorandum of understanding between the two entities signed in September 2021, the company confirmed.

The initial agreement stated that the DNER was going to provide Bayer with seeds of the forest’s native trees, which the company would germinate and harvest in the tree horticulture greenhouse that Bayer uses for these community extension efforts and initiatives. However, the devastation caused by Hurricane Fiona, affecting the island a year later, warranted a plan change, Bayer stated.

“We were unable to deliver the trees we were sowing at the Juana Díaz greenhouse; they were lost due to Hurricane Fiona,” said Alfredo Torres-Berrocales, Nursery Design Operations technician at Bayer in Puerto Rico and BHSH team member.

“So, we trained with the DNER to create the artificial nests used in their captivity recovery program. We studied the design and contributed some improvements to it. We collaborated by designing, building and delivering 10 nests, just in time for the parrots’ mating season,” he said.

The Puerto Rican parrot, “Amazona vittata,” is in danger of extinction due to several threats, ranging from habitat loss due to deforestation, catastrophic natural phenomena, illegal hunting, and many others, the DNER stated.

Efforts to protect the Puerto Rican parrot began in the late 1940s. In 1968, a cooperative program was initiated among the DNER, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the U.S. Forest Service and the World Wildlife Fund for the recovery of the species.

The recovery program keeps adult parrots in captivity with the goal of reproducing them and eventually releasing the offspring in optimal health and age to increase the wild population.

“We constantly change plans because of inclement weather in Puerto Rico during hurricane season. Biodiversity is one of the pillars of our organization and our Power Sustainability corporate program, and I am glad we could adjust and move forward,” said Frederick Ortiz, Product Development Center leader at Bayer Crop Science Puerto Rico.

“All of us at Bayer — as individuals and as a company — have always valued our endemic animals. I reiterate that it’s important that we get involved in discussing these issues and participate in these social and environmental initiatives. I congratulate the team for their adaptability and commitment to achieving this goal,” he said.

In 2018, Bayer Group launched its corporate Project Sustainability program to intensify its sustainability efforts worldwide. Since then, the local operation in Juana Díaz, Bayer Crop Science Puerto Rico, has conducted different initiatives that include, but are not limited to, restoring and reforesting habitats and preserving natural resources in and around its farms.

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This story was written by our staff based on a press release.

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