Struggling with COVID-19 in 2020 was unexpected for all of us. Even though it is now 2021, the challenges of living during a pandemic are still ongoing. However, this did not get in the way of Begawan Foundation and the Madhusuara Breeders Association. On March 10, we held a meeting with the Bali Starling breeders association in Melinggih Kelod Village, ensuring that we implemented health protocols.

The meeting, which was held on a beautiful afternoon at the foundation’s Breeding and Release Center, was the opportunity to discuss our 2021 plans for the community-based Bali Starling conservation program in collaboration with Madhusuara Breeders Association. The meeting was attended by Bradley Gardner, the founder of Begawan Foundation, the staff, breeders from Madhusuara Breeders Association, and drh. I Made Sugiarta, our newly appointed veterinarian.

Drh. Made Sugiarta has been highly involved in conservation programs for a long time, including the breeding and release of Bali Starlings. He was also involved in the release in Nusa Penida from 2006 to 2007 of Begawan Foundation’s Bali Starlings. To complement our program for community-based Bali Starling conservation in 2021, drh. Made Sugiarta and Begawan Foundation will provide training and development for the bird keeper staff and the breeders from Madhusuara Breeders Association.

I Wayan Susana, head of the breeders’ association, expressed his enthusiasm for the conservation plans for 2021, especially the upcoming release of Bali Starlings which will be carried out in the near future in villagers’ compounds in Banjar Begawan and Banjar Peneca, Melinggih Kelod village. We highly appreciate the enthusiasm and commitment of Melinggih Kelod village residents to this endangered bird conservation program. (Nitya Swastika)

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