Steve Howard is in the Northern Mariana Islands, working with Pacific Bird Conservation to protect birds and blogging about his experience.

This post was written by Steve Howard


Transport boxes that will be used when the birds are translocated.

Transport boxes that will be used when the birds are translocated.

The adventure ends.

Today I left Tinian for Saipan, where I’ll spend the night before heading home. As of this morning, the goal of catching 50 Bridled White Eyes was met, and we were close to 50 Tinian Monarchs. In the coming days they’ll close up the nets and load the birds they have on a boat (one, frankly, which doesn’t look all that seaworthy) and take them to Guguan, an island which is a 14 hour boat ride north. Once there, the transport boxes will be strapped to backpack frames and hauled up the hill in the center of the island on people’s backs. Once in the appropriate habitat the boxes will be opened, and new populations of two threatened species will be founded.

From habitat loss to the introduction of the brown tree snake, humans have done a lot to affect the animals of the Mariana Islands. This time, the affect was positive. I’m grateful to have played my part.

One last thought. I fly tomorrow to Guam, then Tokyo, then Houston. I leave Tokyo at 4:45 Saturday afternoon, and get to Houston at 2:30 Saturday afternoon. I just can’t wrap my head around that!!

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