island of Bali
Length, 22-25 cm
Estimated at fewer than 30 in the wild
Tropical moist deciduous forest in Bali Barat national Park
Free as a bird? Hardly. The Bali startling is constantly monitored and closely guarded in an effort to keep persistent poachers from capturing the last few birds remaining in the forest. The pet trade is just one of the threats hovering over Bali's only endemic bird. The little arboreal feeder-which makes its nest in abandoned woodpecker holes-is also facing competition with the much more numerous black-winged starling and the constraints of living within an extremely restricted range. An aggressive captive breeding and release program may well be the only chance the Bali starling has left at a life freedom.