Bali Starlings are more productive in the wild than in captivity, and can breed up to 5 times a year. In the enclosures, pairs may only breed 2-3 times. Begawan selected six single Bali Starlings, at least 1.5 years old, to form a flock in the socialisation enclosure before being released into the wild. In November 2021, Begawan installed the enclosure for pre-release adaptation for the birds at the proposed flock release site in Banjar Bayad, Melinggih Kelod Village. The habituation for a flock takes 2-3 months, much longer than for paired birds.

The foundation also held meetings with the community to discuss access for monitoring of the released birds over a period of time by foundation staff with permission from the local head. Local farmers and communities are also willing to watch out for birds and report any concerns.

On 8 January 2022, all the six young birds were moved from Begawan Breeding Centre to the socialisation enclosure in Banjar Bayad. To ensure all the birds were safe and in good condition, our bird keeper visited the site daily to check on their condition, feed them, and clean inside the enclosure.

Finally on 7 April 2022, Begawan released this flock of free-flying young wild Bali Starlings in Banjar Bayad in an area that is not part of the nesting area of the current wild pairs which are territorially protecting their own areas. Under the supervision of our veterinarian, the Begawan team and members of the local community will monitor the released flock of birds regularly until they settle. Our goal is to increase the population of this critically endangered species and ensure that they are able to fly freely in the wild. (Ikhsan)

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