[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 121 (Tuesday, June 24, 2014)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 35869-35900]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-14624]



[[Page 35869]]

Vol. 79

Tuesday,

No. 121

June 24, 2014

Part III





 Department of the Interior





-----------------------------------------------------------------------





Fish and Wildlife Service





50 CFR Part 17





-----------------------------------------------------------------------





 Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Three Foreign Parrot 
Species; Final Rule

Federal Register / Vol. 79 , No. 121 / Tuesday, June 24, 2014 / Rules 
and Regulations

[[Page 35870]]


-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

Fish and Wildlife Service

50 CFR Part 17

[Docket No. FWS-R9-ES-2010-0099; 450 003 0115]
RIN 1018-AX50


Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Three Foreign 
Parrot Species

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Final rule.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce a 
final rule to list the Philippine cockatoo (Cacatua haematuropygia) and 
the yellow-crested cockatoo (C. sulphurea) as endangered, and to list 
the white cockatoo (C. alba) as threatened under the Endangered Species 
Act of 1973, as amended (ESA). We are taking these actions in response 
to a petition to list these three cockatoo species as endangered or 
threatened under the ESA. We also finalize the special rule for the 
white cockatoo in conjunction with our final listing as threatened for 
this species.

DATES: This final action will be effective on July 24, 2014.

ADDRESSES: This final rule is available on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov at Docket No. FWS-R9-ES-2010-0099. Comments and 
materials we received, as well as supporting documentation used in the 
preparation of this rule, are available for public inspection, by 
appointment, during normal business hours at: U.S. Fish and Wildlife 
Service, 4401 N. Fairfax Drive, Suite 400, Arlington, VA 22203.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Janine Van Norman, Chief, Branch of 
Foreign Species, Ecological Services Program, U.S. Fish and Wildlife 
Service, 4401 North Fairfax Drive, Room 420, Arlington, VA 22203; 
telephone 703-358-2171. If you use a telecommunications device for the 
deaf (TDD), call the Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 800-
877-8339.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Executive Summary

I. Purpose of the Regulatory Action

    We are listing the Philippine cockatoo and the yellow-crested 
cockatoo as endangered and the white cockatoo as threatened under the 
Endangered Species Act (Act) (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.) because of 
habitat loss and degradation and poaching for the pet trade, which are 
the primary threats to the continued survival of these species.

II. Major Provisions of the Regulatory Action

    This action lists the Philippine cockatoo and the yellow-crested 
cockatoo as endangered on the List of Endangered and Threatened 
Wildlife at 50 CFR 17.11(h). This action also lists the white cockatoo 
as threatened on the List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife at 50 
CFR 17.11(h), and allows the import into and export from the United 
States of certain captive-bred white cockatoos, and allows certain acts 
in interstate commerce of white cockatoos, without a permit under 50 
CFR 17.32.

Background

    The Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act) (16 U.S.C. 
1531 et seq.), is a law that was passed to prevent extinction of 
species by providing measures to help alleviate the loss of species and 
their habitats. Before a plant or animal species can receive the 
protection provided by the Act, it must first be added to the Federal 
List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife or the Federal List of 
Endangered and Threatened Plants. Section 4 of the Act and its 
implementing regulations at 50 CFR part 424 set forth the procedures 
for adding species to these lists.

Previous Federal Actions

    In our proposed rule, published August 9, 2011 (76 FR 49202), we 
announced that listing the Philippine cockatoo and yellow-crested 
cockatoo as endangered was warranted, and we issued a proposed rule to 
add these two species as endangered on the List of Endangered and 
Threatened Wildlife at 50 CFR 17.11(h). We found that listing the 
crimson shining parrot (Prosopeia splendens) as endangered or 
threatened was not warranted. We further found that listing the white 
cockatoo as threatened was warranted, and we issued a proposed rule to 
add that species as threatened on the List of Endangered and Threatened 
Wildlife at 50 CFR 17.11(h) as well as a proposed special rule under 
section 4(d) of the Act for white cockatoo.
    During the public comment period, which ended on October 11, 2011, 
we received 234 comments from the public (see http://www.regulations.gov, docket number FWS-R9-ES-2010-0099). All comments, 
including names and addresses of commenters, have become part of the 
administrative record.

Petition History

    On January 31, 2008, the Service received a petition dated January 
29, 2008, from Friends of Animals, as represented by the Environmental 
Law Clinic, University of Denver, Sturm College of Law, requesting that 
we list 14 parrot species under the ESA. The petition clearly 
identified itself as a petition and included the requisite information 
required in the Code of Federal Regulations (50 CFR 424.14(a)). On July 
14, 2009 (74 FR 33957), we published a 90-day finding in which we 
determined that the petition presented substantial scientific and 
commercial information to indicate that listing may be warranted for 12 
of the 14 parrot species.
    In our 90-day finding on this petition, we announced the initiation 
of a status review to list as endangered or threatened under the ESA 
the following 12 parrot species: Blue-headed macaw (Primolius couloni), 
crimson shining parrot (Prosopeia splendens), great green macaw (Ara 
ambiguus), grey-cheeked parakeet (Brotogeris pyrrhoptera), hyacinth 
macaw (Anodorhynchus hyacinthinus), military macaw (Ara militaris), 
Philippine cockatoo (Cacatua haematuropygia), red-crowned parrot 
(Amazona viridigenalis), scarlet macaw (Ara macao), white cockatoo 
(Cacatua alba), yellow-billed parrot (Amazona collaria), and yellow-
crested cockatoo (Cacatua sulphurea). We initiated the status review to 
determine if listing each of the 12 species is warranted, and initiated 
a 60-day public comment period to allow all interested parties an 
opportunity to provide information on the status of these 12 species of 
parrots. The public comment period closed on September 14, 2009.
    On October 24, 2009, and December 2, 2009, the Service received a 
60-day notice of intent to sue from Friends of Animals and WildEarth 
Guardians, for failure to issue 12-month findings on the petition. On 
March 2, 2010, Friends of Animals and WildEarth Guardians filed suit 
against the Service for failure to make timely 12-month findings within 
the statutory deadline of the Act on the petition to list the 14 
species (Friends of Animals, et al. v. Salazar, Case No. 10 CV 00357 
D.D.C.).
    On July 21, 2010, a settlement agreement was approved by the Court 
(Friends of Animals, et al. v. Salazar, Case No. 10 CV 00357 D.D.C.), 
in which the Service agreed to submit to the Federal Register by July 
29, 2011, September 30, 2011, and November 30, 2011, determinations 
whether the petitioned action is warranted, not

[[Page 35871]]

warranted, or warranted but precluded by other listing actions for no 
less than 4 of the petitioned species on each date.
    On August 9, 2011, the Service published in the Federal Register a 
12-month status review finding for the crimson shining parrot (a 
finding that listing was not warranted) and a proposed rule for the 
following three parrot species: Philippine cockatoo, white cockatoo, 
and yellow-crested cockatoo (76 FR 49202).
    On October 6, 2011, we published a 12-month status review finding 
for the red-crowned parrot (76 FR 62016); on October 11, 2011, we 
published a 12-month status review and proposed rule for the yellow-
billed parrot (76 FR 62740); and on October 12, 2011, we published a 
12-month status review for the blue-headed macaw and grey-cheeked 
parakeet (76 FR 63480).
    On September 16, 2011, an extension to the settlement agreement was 
approved by the Court (CV-10-357, D. DC), in which the Service agreed 
to submit a determination for the remaining four petitioned species to 
the Federal Register by June 30, 2012.
    On July 6, 2012, the Service published in the Federal Register a 
12-month status review finding and proposed rule for the four following 
parrot species: Great green macaw and the military macaw (77 FR 40172), 
hyacinth macaw (77 FR 39965), and the scarlet macaw (77 FR 40222).
    Upon publication in the Federal Register on August 9, 2011, of the 
12-month status review finding and proposed rule for these species (76 
FR 49202), we initiated a 60-day public comment period, which ended on 
October 11, 2011.

Summary of Comments

    We base this action on a review of the best scientific and 
commercial information available, including all information we received 
during the public comment period. In the August 9, 2011, proposed rule, 
we requested that all interested parties submit information that might 
contribute to the development of a final rule. We also contacted 
appropriate scientific experts and organizations and invited them to 
comment on the proposed listing.
    We reviewed all comments we received for substantive issues and new 
information regarding the proposed listing of these species, and we 
address those comments below. We received 243 comments, three of which 
were from peer reviewers; these comments are available at http://www.regulations.gov under Docket No. FWS-R9-ES-2010-0099. Many of the 
commenters supported the listings, some commenters objected to the 
rule, although many of the commenters did not appear to understand the 
criteria for listing under the Act. Therefore, we are providing 
clarification below. Many comments either simply opposed or objected 
without providing scientific or commercial information. The following 
summarizes the comments received and our responses.

Comments Regarding Special 4(d) Rule

    Many commenters, while not opposed to the listing of the species, 
asked for a special rule under section 4(d) of the Act (also called a 
``4(d) rule'') that would allow interstate trade of these species to 
occur.

Response

    Section 4(d) of the Act allows the Service to establish special 
regulations only for species determined to be threatened under the ESA. 
The ESA specifies that 4(d) rules must be ``necessary and advisable to 
provide for the conservation of such species.'' Special rules cannot be 
applied to species listed as endangered under the Act. Because we 
determined that listing the Philippine cockatoo and yellow-crested 
cockatoo as endangered under the ESA was warranted, we are prohibited 
from developing a special rule allowing interstate commerce for these 
two species. We proposed and are finalizing a special rule for the 
white cockatoo, in conjunction with our final rule to list the species 
as threatened, which would allow for interstate trade in this species 
without an ESA permit.

Comment Regarding Similarity in Appearance of Yellow-Crested Cockatoo 
to Sulphur-Crested Cockatoo

    One commenter expressed concern that the similarity in appearance 
between the yellow-crested cockatoo (Cacatua sulphurea), native to 
Indonesia, and another species, the sulphur-crested cockatoo (Cacatua 
galerita), native to Australia, could lead to confusion by a law 
enforcement official.

Response

    We acknowledge that these two species may be difficult to 
distinguish. In fact, the yellow-crested cockatoo (Cacatua sulphurea), 
which is the subject of this rule, is often inappropriately referred to 
as the sulphur-crested cockatoo. There are physical differences between 
the species. The yellow-crested cockatoo is smaller both in size and 
weight than the sulphur-crested cockatoo and can usually be 
distinguished by the lack of pale yellow coloring on its cheeks. The 
average weight of the sulphur-crested cockatoo is more than twice that 
of yellow-crested cockatoo, and the sulphur crested cockatoo length is 
an average 50 cm (19.69 inches), while the yellow-crested average 
length is 33 cm (13 in). The Service's Division of Law Enforcement is 
aware of both the similarity of appearance and the differences in legal 
status of these two species. Both species receive protections under the 
Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna 
and Flora (CITES) and the Wild Bird Conservation Act (WBCA). See 
Conservation Status for the Philippine Cockatoo section for a 
discussion of these two regulatory mechanisms. To assist pet owners in 
identifying their cockatoo, we have developed a factsheet which is 
available on our Web site. Please visit http://www.fws.gov/endangered 
for additional information.

Comment Suggesting Withdrawal of Proposed Listing Determinations

    Several commenters, including bird breeders and the American 
Federation of Aviculture, objected to our findings (see http://www.regulations.gov, docket number FWS-R9-ES-2010-0099) and requested 
that the proposed listing determination be withdrawn.

Response

    We thank all the commenters for their interest in the conservation 
of these species and thank those commenters who provided information 
for our consideration in making this listing determination. Under 
section 4(b) of the ESA, the Service is required to make determinations 
solely on the basis of the best scientific and commercial data 
available after conducting a review of the status of the species. When 
we published our proposed rule, we opened a public comment period 
during which we requested any additional information on the species 
being evaluated. In making this finding, we reviewed information 
provided within the petition, contacted species experts, and ensured 
that we have the most current information on these three species. 
Therefore, we have obtained and considered the ``best scientific and 
commercial data available'' in our species status review and in our 
listing determination. After careful consideration, we conclude that 
these listings under the Act are necessary for the conservation of the 
species.

Peer Review

    In accordance with our policy, ``Notice of Interagency Cooperative 
Policy for Peer Review in Endangered Species Act Activities,'' that was

[[Page 35872]]

published on July 1, 1994 (59 FR 34270), we sought the expert opinion 
of at least three appropriate independent specialists regarding this 
rule. The purpose of such review is to ensure listing decisions are 
based on scientifically sound data, assumptions, and analysis. We sent 
copies of the proposed rule to the peer reviewers immediately following 
publication in the Federal Register. We invited these peer reviewers to 
comment, during the public comment period, on the specific assumptions 
and the data that are the basis for our conclusions regarding the 
proposal to list as endangered the Philippine cockatoo (Cacatua 
haematuropygia) and the yellow-crested cockatoo (C. sulphurea), and to 
list as threatened the white cockatoo (C. alba), under the ESA. We 
received information from three peer reviewers.
    We considered all comments and information we received during the 
comment period from peer reviewers on the proposed rule during 
preparation of this final rulemaking, and all comments have been 
documented for the final record.

Summary of Changes From Proposed Rule

    This final rule incorporates changes to our proposed listing 
determination based on the comments that we received that are discussed 
above and newly available scientific or commercial information. Peer 
reviewers generally commented that the proposed rule was thorough and 
comprehensive. We made some technical corrections based on new, 
although limited, information. For example, one commenter pointed out 
that, with respect to white cockatoos, which require large nesting 
cavities (in large trees), the nonnative Jatropha curcas is cultivated 
as a large shrub rather than a tree. Therefore, it will never produce 
cavities large enough to be suitable for cockatoos. None of the 
information, however, changed our listing determinations.
    Special rule for the white cockatoo. On March 12, 2013, we 
published in the Federal Register (78 FR 15624) a final rule listing 
the yellow-billed parrot as threatened with a special rule under 
section 4(d) of the Act, and correcting the salmon-crested cockatoo 
special rule under section 4(d) of the Act. In the preamble of that 
rule, we explained that we were adopting for yellow-billed parrot and 
correcting for salmon-crested cockatoo a provision that would allow 
certain acts in interstate commerce for yellow-billed parrots and 
salmon-crested cockatoos that may be conducted without a threatened 
species permit under 50 CFR 17.32. The provisions of that special rule, 
found at 50 CFR 17.41(c), are similar to and consistent with our intent 
in proposing the exceptions contained in the 4(d) rule for the white 
cockatoo. As discussed in further detail below, we are amending the 
regulations found at 50 CFR 17.41(c) to include the white cockatoo 
among the species in the parrot family to which 50 CFR 17.41(c) applies 
(see Special Rule).

Factors Affecting the Species

    Section 4 of the ESA (16 U.S.C. 1533) and implementing regulations 
(50 CFR 424) set forth procedures for adding species to the Federal 
Lists of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants. Under section 
4(a)(1) of the ESA, a species may be determined to be endangered or 
threatened based on any one or a combination of the following five 
factors:
    (A) The present or threatened destruction, modification, or 
curtailment of its habitat or range;
    (B) Overutilization for commercial, recreational, scientific, or 
educational purposes;
    (C) Disease or predation;
    (D) The inadequacy of existing regulatory mechanisms;
    (E) Other natural or manmade factors affecting its continued 
existence.
    In considering what factors might constitute a threat; we look 
beyond the actual or perceived exposure of the species to the factor to 
determine how the species responds to the factor and whether the factor 
causes actual impacts to the species. If there is exposure to a factor, 
but no response, or only a positive response, that factor is not a 
threat. If there is exposure and the species responds negatively, the 
factor may be a threat and we then attempt to determine how significant 
a factor it is. If the factor is significant, it may drive or 
contribute to the risk of extinction of the species such that it is 
considered to be a threat. In some cases, there is little information 
available regarding the status of the species, in part due to their 
remoteness.
    This finding addresses the following three cockatoo species: 
Philippine cockatoo, white cockatoo, and yellow-crested cockatoo. For 
each of these species, we evaluated the five factors under ESA Section 
4(a)(1) on the species. In some cases, we found that, under a 
particular factor, a threat was contributing to the extinction risk for 
multiple species, while some factors constituted a threat for some of 
the species, but not others. In some cases, the factors affecting 
species are the same or very similar, and in other cases the factors 
are unique. In each evaluation, we clearly identify what species is 
being addressed, and if the threat applies to more than one species.

Species Information

    Cockatoos are found only in Australasia--a few archipelagos in 
Southeast Asia (Bismarck, East Timor, Indonesia, Philippines, Tanimbar, 
and Solomon), New Guinea, and Australia. Cockatoos are present on 
Lombok and Sulawesi, but not on Bali and Borneo (Cameron 2007, pp. 1-
3). These oceanic islands have high levels of endemism, meaning the 
species that occur there are unique to those islands. Cockatoos are a 
distinct group of parrots (Order Psittaciformes), distinguished by the 
presence of an erectile crest (Cameron 2007, p. 1; Collar 1989, p. 5) 
and the lack of ``dyck texture'' in their feathers. Dyck texturing is a 
microscopic texturing that produces blue and green coloration and is 
present in the plumage of other parrots (Brown and Toft 1999, p. 141).

A. Philippine cockatoo (Cacatua haematuropygia)

Taxonomy and Species Description

    The species was first taxonomically described by M[uuml]ller in 
1776 (BLI 2013a, p. 5). We accept the species as C. haematuropygia, 
which follows the Integrated Taxonomic Information System (ITIS 2011). 
The Philippine cockatoo, or red-vented cockatoo, is locally known as 
the ``katala'' and ``kalangay,'' and has a helmet crest and a red 
undertail (Rowley 1997 in Boussekey 2000, p. 137).

Population Estimates

    The population is estimated to be between 370-770 mature 
individuals, roughly equivalent to 550-1,200 individuals in total (BLI 
2013a, p. 6). Surveys indicated that until around the 1980s, the 
Philippine cockatoo was fairly common within the Philippine archipelago 
(BLI 2013a; Boussekey 2000, p. 138; Collar et al. 1998). Historically, 
it was known to exist on 52 islands in the Philippines; currently it is 
believed to exist on 8 islands (BLI 2011, p. 1).
    The species' current range is significantly reduced from its 
historical range. In the past, the species was reported to have been 
commonly found throughout the Philippines, except for northern and 
central Luzon (Collar et al. 1999 in Widmann and Widmann 2008, p. 23; 
DuPont 1971 in Boussekey 2000, p. 138). It was common throughout the 
Philippines as recently as the 1950s. Between 1980 and 2000, there was 
a 60 to 90 percent population decline throughout its range (Boussekey 
2000, p.

[[Page 35873]]

138). In the early 1990s, the population was estimated to be between 
1,000 and 4,000 (Tabaranza 1992 and Lambert 1994 in BLI 2001, p. 
1,681).
    Snyder et al. (2000) reported the following population surveys. A 
1991 survey estimated between 800 and 3,000 birds exist on Palawan. 
Pandanan, Bugsok, and Bancalan Islands were thought to support 100 to 
300 individuals and Dumaran 150 to 250 individuals, and possibly a few 
hundred were thought to exist in the Tawi-Tawi region (Lambert 1994; 
1993). A single pair was found on Siquijor in 1991 (Evans et al. 1993). 
A few were found at Mount Isarog, Luzon in 1988 (Goodman and Gonzales 
1990), and a few pairs were found in Mindoro at Malpalon (Dutson et al. 
1992). Some birds were observed on the island of Masbate in 1993, and 
the species has been recorded a few times in singles or small numbers 
in Rajah Sikatuna National Park, on the island of Bohol since 1989 
(Brooks et al. 1995b in BLI 2001, p. 1676). In 1994, two pairs were 
seen on Tawi-Tawi (Dutson in litt. 1997), and the species was 
considered widespread at that location in 1995-1996, although 
apparently more often seen in captivity than in the wild (two single 
specimens were observed in Batu-Batu and a single bird and a pair were 
observed in Buan) (Allen in litt. 1997). Three birds were observed on 
Simunul, Tawi-Tawi in 1996 (Allen in litt. 1997; Dutson et al. 1996). 
The species is considered extinct on the islands of Cebu (Brooks et al. 
1995) and Negros (Brooks et al. 1992). Some islands may not hold viable 
populations, and may be functionally extinct.
    Between 2004 and 2010, the population estimate decreased from 
between 1,000 and 4,000 individuals to between 450 and 1,245 individual 
birds in the wild (BLI 2013a; BLI 2010; Widmann and Widmann 2010, pers. 
comm.; Widmann and Widmann 2008, p. 23). This species currently is 
found in the Culasian Managed Resource Protected Area (CMRPA), the 
Polillo Island Group, Palawan, Dumaran Island, Pandanan and Bugsok 
Islands, Rasa Island, Tawi-Tawi, the Calamian group of islands, 
Malampaya, San Vicente, and possibly on Samar Island (Widmann and 
Widmann 2011, pers. comm.). An estimated additional 400 individuals may 
survive in the Sulu archipelago; however, only sparse information is 
available for this area (Widmann et al. 2010a; Widmann et al. 2009a; 
Widmann et al. 2007). Subpopulations away from Palawan and the Sulus 
are thought to be very small, and likely do not have viable populations 
(Widmann 2010, pers. comm). The extent these populations are 
interbreeding is unclear at this time. Detailed discussion of each of 
these areas follows.

 Table 1--Population Counts and Estimates of Philippine Cockatoo Between
               2007 and 2010 on Islands in the Philippines
   [Widmann et al. 2010a; Widmann et al. 2009a; Widmann et al. 2007].
------------------------------------------------------------------------
 Number of
individuals                            Location
------------------------------------------------------------------------
         60  Bugsok Island (40 to 80 estimated)
         20  Burdeos, Polillo Islands
          3  CMRPA, Palawan Island
         23  Dumaran, Lagan
         80  Pandanan Island
          2  Patnanungan, Polillo Islands
        280  Rasa Island
          4  Samar
        200  Tawi-Tawi (100 to 400 estimated)
    672....  TOTAL *
------------------------------------------------------------------------
* Note: This is not a full population survey; it documents birds
  actually counted, observed, or estimated (Widmann 2010, pers. comm.).

Biology, Distribution, and Habitat

    The Philippine cockatoo is endemic to the Philippines, an 
archipelago of approximately 7,000 islands. The total area of the 
Philippines is 30,000,000 hectares (74,131,614 acres) (Kummer 1991, p. 
44). The Philippine cockatoo requires lowland primary or secondary 
forests with suitable nesting tree cavities and food sources, within or 
adjacent to riparian or coastal areas with mangroves (BLI 2013a). The 
species is reported to use regenerating forest and even heavily 
degraded forest, as long as emergent nest trees survive. However, its 
nest sites are restricted to lowlands (Widmann and Widmann 2010, pers. 
comm).
    This species is a food generalist; its diet varies based on the 
seasons. It consumes seeds, legumes, fruit, flowers, buds, and nectar. 
It will also eat agricultural crops such as corn and rice, and has been 
observed feeding on Moringa oleifera (commonly known as malunggay or 
horseradish tree). The government of the Philippines introduced a bill 
in 2010, in the Fifteenth Congress of the Republic of the Philippines, 
First Regular Session, to encourage planting Moringa oleifera due to 
economic benefits, although it is not native to the Philippines (Senate 
Bill 1349 2010, pp. 1-7). The Philippine cockatoo has also been 
observed feeding on the fruits of Sonneratia, a mangrove species 
(Tabaranza 1992; Lambert 1994 in BLI 2001, p. 1683). In the 
Philippines, the common name for Sonneratia alba is Pagatpat (Widmann 
and Antonio 2011, pp. 20-21).
    This species nests in tree cavities, and produces two to three eggs 
per season; in some exceptional cases, four eggs have been recorded 
(Widmann pers. comm. 2011, p. 1; Cameron 2007, p. 140). Breeding 
generally occurs March through June (BLI 2001, p. 1684), and both sexes 
participate in nest building (Widmann et al. 2001, p. 135). The period 
between incubation and fledging is generally about 95 days (Cameron 
2007, p. 140). The species prefers nests high in the tree canopy, 
generally around 30 m (98 feet) (BLI 2001, p. 1683), but nest heights 
between 12 and 35 m (39 to 114 feet) have also been observed (Widmann 
et al. 2001, p. 135). The diameter of the cavity openings observed has 
been between 10 and 25 cm (4 and 10 inches) (Widmann et al. 2001, p. 
135). Some artificial nest boxes have been installed to increase 
nesting habitat; the species prefers horizontal rather than vertical 
nest boxes (Low 2001, p. 3). Some of the tree species they use for 
roosting include Dipterocarpus grandiflorus (common names: Apitong, 
tempudau, tunden, lagan bras aput) and Intsia bijuga (common names: 
Borneo-teak, Moluccan ironwood, and merbau asam), as well as coconut 
trees (Lambert 1994 in BLI 2001, p. 1686). They also use Garuga 
floribunda (no common name [ncn]) and Sonneratia alba (Cameron 2007, p. 
35).
Culasian Managed Resource Protected Area (CMRPA)
    The CMRPA is in the south of Palawan Island and is 1,954 hectares 
(ha) (4,828 acres (ac). The total land area of Palawan is approximately 
1.5 million ha (3.7 million ac), including the 1,767 islands and islets 
surrounding the main island. This species exists both within the actual 
designated protected area (CMRPA) and in the areas surrounding the 
protected area on Palawan Island. This species has been known to fly 
from the mainland to offshore islands as far as 8 km (5 mi) away from 
the mainland to roost and breed. No roosting sites are known in the 
CMRPA and surrounding areas (Widmann et al. 2010a, p. 23); however, 
there have been sightings there: Four birds were observed in September 
2009, and three were observed in December 2009 (Widmann et al. 2010a, 
p. 37). As of 2011, at least two Philippine cockatoos persisted inside 
the protected area, but they had not bred in the last 4 years.
    CMRPA has been described as exhibiting the ``empty forest 
syndrome.'' Although its forest is largely intact, little wildlife 
remains due to hunting

[[Page 35874]]

pressure and poaching. As of the date of this publication, there are no 
indications that the species' status is improving. Only one breeding 
pair exists outside of the reserve. As of 2010, cockatoo poaching had 
occurred in this area within the past 3 years, and breeding in the 
2009-2010 season failed. Because all nests have been systematically 
poached over many years, extirpation of this population is likely to 
occur suddenly due to lack of recruitment (Widmann and Widmann 2010, 
pers. comm.).
Polillo Islands Group
    This group of islands is approximately 110 km (68 mi) east of 
Manila, in Quezon Province in the northern Philippines. Patnanungan 
Island is part of the Polillo Island Group and is not yet very 
developed. Polillo Island itself is 1,000 km\2\ (386 mi\2\). As of 
2009, within the Polillo group of islands, Patnanungan Island was known 
to contain a population of the Philippine cockatoo (Widmann et al. 
2010, p. 15). However, no roosting sites have been identified on this 
island (Widmann et al. 2010, p. 23). Patnanungan Island is mainly 
covered with secondary vegetation and coconut plantations (Widmann et 
al. 2010, p. 22). Seven nest trees are being monitored in this area 
(Widmann et al. 2009b, p. 7). To the best of our knowledge, there is 
not a viable population on Polillo Island, although the species has 
been observed there. In 2009, in Burdeos, six Philippine cockatoos were 
spotted in Duyan-Duyan Forest in the Anibawan Barangay, where it is 
regularly heard (Widmann et al. 2010, p. 38; Widmann et al. 2009a, p. 
41). In part, because there were fewer than 20 birds prior to their 
protection, recovery in this area is slow (Widmann and Widmann 2010, 
pers. comm.).
Province of Palawan
    The distribution of the Philippine cockatoo within the Palawan 
region includes the Calamian group of islands, Malampaya, San Vicente, 
Dumaran, Sabang and Babuyan River, Iwahig, Rasa, Rizal (CMRPA), 
Pandanan, Bugsuk, and Balabac. Key Philippine cockatoo habitat 
locations within these islands are discussed below.
Dumaran Island
    On Dumaran Island, which is off the northeastern coast of Palawan, 
three areas are managed by the Katala Foundation's Philippine Cockatoo 
Conservation Programme (PCCP). Two of those are protected areas: The 
Omoi Cockatoo Reserve and the Manambaling Cockatoo Reserve (Widmann et 
al. 2009b, p. 7). The third area is Lagan, which is also monitored and 
managed by the Katala Foundation (KFI). On Dumaran Island, the 
protected suitable forest patches are each very small: 1.5 and 0.6 
km\2\ (0.6 and 0.2 mi\2\), respectively (Widmann and Widmann 2008, p. 
24). On this island in 2008, although 10 eggs were counted, only two 
birds fledged (Widmann et al. 2009b, p. 6). Recovery is slow; they 
started with fewer than 20 birds before protection started (Widmann and 
Widmann 2010, pers. comm.). Currently, there are an estimated 30 
individuals on Dumaran Island (Widmann and Widmann 2011, pers. comm.).
Pandanan and Bugsok Islands
    Pandanan and Bugsok (119 km\2\) (46 mi\2\) are small islands south 
of Palawan, within the Balabac Island Region. It is likely that 
Pandanan holds possibly the second-most important population of 
Philippine cockatoos, containing at least 80 individuals (Widmann and 
Widmann 2010, pers. comm.). Approximately 40 birds were observed in a 
coconut plantation in 2009 on Malinsuno Island, a 10-hectare (24-acre) 
nearby island that is part of the Pandanan Barangay (equivalent to 
county or province) (Widmann et al. 2010c, p. 5; Widmann and Widmann 
2010, pers. comm.). On Bugsok Island, Balabac, also in the Pandanan 
Barangay, approximately 40 cockatoos were observed roosting (Widmann et 
al. 2010c, p. 5). A large part of Pandanan Island itself is not easily 
accessible; it is privately managed, and is protected for the most 
part. KFI is working on building a relationship with organizations to 
monitor and formally protect this island, and wardens were being hired 
as of 2010 (Widmann et al. 2010, pp. 26, 56).
Rasa Island
    Rasa Island is a protected 8 km\2\ (3 mi\2\) island off the east 
coast of Narra, Palawan. This island was declared a wildlife sanctuary 
in 2006 (Widmann et al. 2010, p. 15). As of 2007, 1.75 km\2\ (0.6 
mi\2\) of the island was coastal and mangrove forest. In 2008, 32 nest 
trees were found to be occupied, 21 pairs had successful fledglings, 
and the population was estimated to be 205 individuals (Widmann et al. 
2009b, pp. 5-6; Widmann et al. 2008, p. 14; Widmann and Widmann 2008, 
p. 27). Breeding success was 63 percent; 49 fledglings were banded 
(Widmann and Widmann 2008, p. 24). In years that experienced sufficient 
precipitation, the increase of Philippine cockatoos on Rasa has been 
good. As of 2009, Rasa Island had 64 nest trees, and its cockatoo 
population was approximately 280 individuals, making it the area with 
the highest natural density of Philippine cockatoos (Widmann 2010b). 
KFI estimates that Rasa Island contains about 20 percent of the total 
Philippine cockatoo population (Widmann et al. 2010c, p. 19). The 
success of cockatoos on this island is likely due to the lack of 
potable water, which makes it unattractive to human settlement (BLI 
2001, p. 1687). The Philippine cockatoo population on this island has 
grown due to intense management; in 1997, there were only about 25 
birds on Rasa Island (Widmann and Widmann 2008, p. 24).
Other Islands
    Currently, very little information is available regarding the 
status of the Philippine cockatoo on other islands, such as Samar and 
Tawi-Tawi, in part because these areas are extremely remote. The Katala 
Foundation, Inc. (KFI) surveyed Samar in 2002, at which time only two 
individual Philippine cockatoos were verified. Sightings have been 
reported on Coron Island and on Bellatan Island in the Tawi-Tawi 
region. In 2010, KFI reported that a member of the Wild Bird Club, 
Philippines, had observed approximately 30 to 40 individuals on 
Bellatan Island (Widmann and Widmann 2010, pers. comm.). Sightings of 
this species on Dinagat, Surigao del Norte, and Samal Islands, Davao, 
have been reported, but they remain unverified (Widmann and Widmann 
2010, pers. comm.).
    As of 2010, BLI indicated that possibly 100 to 200 Philippine 
cockatoos existed in the Tawi-Tawi region; however, those data are from 
over 20 years ago, and, therefore, are no longer likely to be an 
accurate population estimate (BLI 2010a, p. 1; Dutson 1997, and Allen 
1997 in Snyder 2000, p. 84; Lambert 1993). Tawi-Tawi is in the 
southwestern part of the Philippines in the Sulu Archipelago. Tawi-Tawi 
consists of 107 islands and islets and is approximately 1,197 km\2\ 
(462 mi\2\) in area. The island of Tawi-Tawi itself is 484 km\2\ (187 
mi\2\) (Dutson et al. 1996, p. 32) and is part of the Autonomous Region 
in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM). This area has experienced problems with 
logging, military activity, and insurgency but as of 2010 is 
encouraging ecotourism (Manila Bulletin 2010; IUCN 2010b; Philippines 
Department of Natural Resources (DENR) 2005), which may have positive 
effects on the Philippine cockatoo.
    Samar is the third largest island in the Philippines archipelago. 
It experienced threats from logging and mining prior to

[[Page 35875]]

1989, but in 1989, an unexpected natural disaster resulted in 
initiation of conservation actions (Samar Island Natural Park 2010, p. 
1). Due to the intense landslides that occurred as a result of logging 
activities, a logging moratorium was put into place that year. Samar 
Island Natural Park was subsequently established on the island, which 
may have positive results for the Philippine cockatoo. Samar Island has 
been reported to contain one of the Philippine's largest unfragmented 
tracts of lowland rainforest. While several Philippine cockatoo 
sightings have been reported on Samar, researchers have no current 
estimate of how many exist there other than the reported sightings (BLI 
2010a; Widmann and Widmann 2010, pers. comm.; Widmann et al. 2006, p. 
13).

Conservation Status for the Philippine Cockatoo

    Protections exist through various national, local, and 
international mechanisms for this species. The species is on the 
Philippines list of protected species under the Philippines Republic 
Act 9147, otherwise known as the Wildlife Resources Conservation and 
Protection Act of 2001 or the ``Wildlife Act of 2001'' (DENR 2010, p. 
2). This species is classified as critically endangered by the 
Government of the Philippines under this Act (DENR 2010, p. 2). The 
Republic Act No. 9147 provides for the conservation and protection of 
wildlife resources and their habitats. It prohibits certain activities 
such as capture and trade of live wildlife, including the Philippine 
cockatoo. This species has received further protections in the United 
States under the Wild Bird Conservation Act (WBCA), which is described 
under Factor B, below.
    In 1981, the Philippine cockatoo was listed in Appendix II of the 
Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna 
and Flora (CITES). At that time, almost all Psittaciformes species 
(i.e., parrots) were included in Appendix II. CITES is an international 
treaty among 178 nations where member countries work together to ensure 
that international trade in CITES-listed animals and plants is not 
detrimental to the survival of wild populations. This goal is achieved 
by regulating import, export, and re-export of CITES-listed animal and 
plant species and their parts and products through a permitting system 
(http://www.cites.org). Appendix II includes species which although not 
necessarily now threatened with extinction may become so unless trade 
in specimens of such species is subject to strict regulation in order 
to avoid utilization incompatible with their survival; and other 
species which must be subject to regulation in order that trade in 
specimens of certain species threatened with extinction which are or 
may be affected by trade may be brought under effective control (CITES 
Article II(2)). International trade in specimens of Appendix II species 
is authorized when: (1) The CITES Scientific Authority of the country 
of export has determined that the export will not be detrimental to the 
survival of the species in the wild; and (2) the CITES Management 
Authority of the country of export has determined that the specimens to 
be exported were legally acquired (http://www.cites.org/eng/disc/how.shtml, accessed June 24, 2010). In the United States, CITES is 
implemented through the U.S. Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended 
(ESA; 16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.). This species was transferred from 
Appendix II to Appendix I of CITES in 1992. Appendix I includes species 
threatened with extinction which are or may be affected by trade, and 
international trade is permitted only under exceptional circumstances 
(CITES Article II(1)). Trade in Appendix I specimens for primarily 
commercial purposes is generally prohibited.
    The Philippine cockatoo is also listed as Critically Endangered in 
the 2010 IUCN Red List. Critically endangered is IUCN's most severe 
category of extinction assessment, which equates to an extremely high 
risk of extinction in the wild. IUCN criteria include rate of decline, 
population size, area of geographic distribution, and degree of 
population and distribution fragmentation; however, IUCN rankings do 
not confer any actual protection or management.
Evaluation of Factors Affecting the Philippine Cockatoo

Factor A. The Present or Threatened Destruction, Modification, or 
Curtailment of Its Habitat or Range

    The loss of dry coastal forest is a significant factor affecting 
the Philippine cockatoo. Mangroves are not optimal cockatoo habitat; 
however, they are important for the species presently, since they are 
the largest lowland forests still present in the Philippines (Widmann 
and Widmann 2011, pers. comm). Widespread deforestation and destruction 
of native mangroves have affected the habitat of the Philippine 
cockatoo. The loss of this species' habitat through deforestation 
largely occurred prior to the 1980s (Galang 2004, p. 13; Kummer 1991, 
p. 46). Forest cover decreased in Palawan from 10,703 km\2\ (4,132 
mi\2\) in 1950, to 6,605 km\2\ (2,550 mi\2\) in 1987 (Kummer 1991, p. 
57). In the 1990s, commercial logging on Palawan, the primary location 
of the Philippine cockatoo, was suspended by presidential decree; 
however, nearly all of the island's forests were already leased to 
logging operations (Galang 2004, p. 14; Lambert 1994 in BLI 2001, p. 
1686). Many of Palawan's mangroves, which covered 46,000 ha (13,668 ac) 
in 1988, were also cleared for construction of fish ponds (Quinnell and 
Balmford 1988 in BLI 2001, p. 1686). As a result of the pressures for 
resources, much of the forest is either secondary forest or has been 
converted to plantations or agriculture (Galang 2004, pp. 13-14; Heaney 
et al. 1998, 88 pp.). In most areas within the range of the Philippine 
cockatoo, there is a severe shortage of timber and firewood; 
consequently, illegal logging is widespread. In addition to mangrove 
logging, slash-and-burn farming (referred to as ``kaingin'' in the 
Philippines) is a problem in many areas, particularly in the Polillo 
Island Group.
    Soil erosion is a secondary impact to this species' habitat that 
occurs as a result of deforestation that further degrades suitable 
habitat (Kummer 1991, p. 41), as demonstrated on Samar Island. Removal 
of trees, digging, and mining are causing secondary habitat degradation 
through severe erosion in addition to habitat degradation and 
destruction that occurs due to road construction. During the rainy 
season, water creates deep clefts along the roads that are created for 
mining operations, causing roads to collapse. Virtually all chainsaw 
operations in Patnanungan and Burdeos are not registered with the 
appropriate authority (Widmann et al. 2010). No mitigation measures 
have been put into place to reduce erosion (IUCNb 2010, pp. 1-2).
    Cockatoos are severely impacted by selective logging of primary 
forests because they require large trees that can accommodate their 
nests. Selective logging, which targets mature trees, has a negative 
impact on tree-cavity nesters such as the Philippine cockatoo. Research 
has found that the abundance of cockatoos is positively related to the 
density of their favored nest tree (Kinnaird et al. 2003, p. 227). 
Loggers prefer large trees, so these are the trees that would be 
impacted by logging, especially since reduced-impact logging techniques 
are seldom applied. Once the primary forest is logged, the secondary 
forest is generally converted to other uses, or logged again rather 
than being allowed to return to forested habitat. Therefore, although 
cockatoos may continue to inhabit secondary

[[Page 35876]]

forests, the population is usually at a substantially lower number due 
to a decrease in suitable nesting sites.
    Habitat loss is well documented as one of the most significant 
effects humans have on wild species (Coverdale et al. 2013, p. 69; 
Swift and Hannon 2010, p. 50; Fahrig 1997, p. 603; Vitousek et al. 
1997). In some cases, corridors are established to promote connectivity 
between populations of species to reduce the effects of habitat 
fragmentation, and this approach has been shown to be effective 
(Cameron 2007, pp. 110-112; Haddad et al. 2003, pp. 609-615). In the 
case of the Philippine cockatoo, a virtual corridor is being created by 
artificially transplanting captive-reared cockatoos into suitable, 
relatively protected habitat. It is unclear how much this species 
naturally moves from one island habitat to another; however, this 
species has been known to fly from the mainland to nearby islands at 
distances of 8 km (5 mi). Researchers point out that at the 
metapopulation scale (spatially separated populations of the same 
species that interact at some level), habitat fragmentation causes 
habitat patches to be reduced in size and to be isolated from one 
another, and as a result, gene flow between patches is decreased 
(Blanchet et al. 2010, p. 291). Because this species' population has 
decreased in size so rapidly and fragmentation of its habitat has 
occurred so recently and rapidly, it is unlikely that significant 
genetic differences occur between the existing populations. However, 
habitat loss and fragmentation are affecting this species.
    The Palawan Islands Region is essentially the last area where 
Philippine cockatoos have a viable population. Although Palawan has 
been seen as a center for environmental preservation (McNally 2002, p. 
9), it still faces many threats, in part due to a burgeoning human 
population (IUCN 2010b, p. 1; Laurance et al. 2010, p. 377). In 2009, 
the human population of the Philippines was estimated at 91,983,000 
(United Nations (UN) 2009, p. 41), and the human population in the 
country is increasing at a rate of 1.7 percent annually (UN 2009, p. 
51). Palawan, in particular, has experienced rapid human population 
growth (McNally 2002, pp. 8-9). As of 2002, ``Palawan remains a highly 
attractive place of destination for migrants from other areas within 
the Philippines'' (McNally 2002, p. 11). While the burgeoning human 
population on Palawan may not directly affect the Philippine cockatoo, 
it does indirectly affect the species by contributing to the habitat 
loss and other factors described within this rule.
    Despite the protection measures that are in place to restrict 
mining and other activities that degrade habitat, mining operations and 
oil palm plantations are being developed on Palawan Island (Novellino 
2010, pp. 2-48). The Philippine cockatoo has not been recorded in areas 
in southern Palawan where mining and oil palm plantations exist 
(Widmann and Widmann 2010, in litt.). Although mining does not occur 
directly within Philippine cockatoo habitat, it does indirectly affect 
the species by contributing to the habitat losses and pressures 
described within this section (Novellino et al. 2010, pp. 1-48). These 
factors are negatively impacting the ecosystem despite legislative 
protections (refer to Factor D) in Palawan.
    Rasa Island has been formally designated as a wildlife reserve and 
contains a large percentage of the Philippine cockatoo population, 
although small in actual numbers. In addition to the formal protection 
measures in place on Rasa Island, this population is actively monitored 
and protected by KFI staff, which is reported to be very effective. As 
of 2011, no individuals had been poached from this island since 1999 
(Widmann 2011, pers. comm; Widmann et al. 2010a, b, c). In addition to 
this formal and active protection, the island's lack of potable water 
has discouraged subsequent deforestation and habitat loss in this 
location. However, because much of the species' habitat in other 
locations remains fragmented and this species is thought to migrate 
between Rasa Island and Palawan Island, other pressures such as 
poaching continue to remain a potential threat to the species.
    On Dumaran Island, the conversion of habitat to a Jatropha 
plantation is occurring in the few remaining suitable forest patches 
left (Widmann et al. 2010a, pp. 6, 32, 46). Jatropha curcas trees 
produce a fruit with oil that, although inedible, contains high energy 
content and is being explored as an alternative source of energy 
(Mendoza et al. 2007, p. 1). A hectare of Jatropha has been claimed to 
produce 1,892 liters (500 gallons) of fuel. Many industries such as the 
air transportation industry are considering this as a biofuel source, 
and it is also being described as a mechanism for carbon credits. This 
cockatoo species occurs in areas that are managed and protected such as 
the KFI's Omoi Cockatoo Reserve and the Manambaling Cockatoo Reserve 
(Widmann et al. 2009b, p. 7). However, cockatoos use other areas that 
are not protected, and information as of 2011 suggests that the 
implementation of a Jatropha plantation would likely negatively affect 
this species on Dumaran Island (Widmann, personal communication).
    KFI currently manages three areas on Dumaran Island, including a 
newly acquired buffer area in Omoi (Widmann et al. 2010, p. 32). 
Dumaran Island also experiences widespread slash-and-burn agriculture, 
which has begun to affect more forested areas on steeper slopes here 
(Widmann 2008a, p. 19). Larger forested parts of the island have been 
replaced with grass, shrub-land, and dense stands of bamboo as a 
consequence of this practice. Due to factors such as the lack of water 
or level areas, and the development of subsequent irrigation systems, 
lowland rice cultivation is very restricted. However, permanent forms 
of cultivation include coconut and cashew plantations. Human-caused 
forest and grass fires are common, particularly during the dry season. 
Fire is used not only to clear areas for cultivation, but also to 
promote growth of fresh grass for pastures.
    In the other areas where this cockatoo species exists, the current 
extent of the present and future destruction, modification, or 
curtailment of the species' habitat is unclear; however, it is likely 
that the pressures on the species are similar, if not worse, to those 
documented in this section (BLI 2010a; Widmann et al. 2010, p. 15). 
Human encroachment and concomitant increasing human population 
pressures exacerbate the destructive effects of ongoing human 
activities throughout the Philippine cockatoo's habitat. Increased 
urbanization and mining has led to increased infrastructure 
development. Road building and mining projects further facilitate human 
access to remaining forest fragments throughout the species' range, 
including protected areas. Mining projects, such as those proposed or 
occurring on Palawan, open new areas to exploitation and attract people 
seeking employment; these pressures from human development will likely 
spill over into nearby Philippine cockatoo habitat.

Summary of Factor A

    We have identified a number of threats to the habitat of the 
Philippine cockatoo that have occurred in the past, are impacting the 
species now, and will continue to impact the species. Habitat loss and 
degradation from past events, such as selective and commercial logging, 
conversion to plantations or agriculture, and mining, have decreased 
this species' suitable habitat; and these activities are still 
occurring. Illegal

[[Page 35877]]

logging (discussed under Factor D) is widespread in the Philippines 
(Laurence 2007, p. 1544; Galang 2004, pp. 12, 17, 22; Kummer 1991, pp. 
70-75), which adds to any pressures of legal deforestation. Based on 
the best available scientific and commercial data available, we find 
that the present and threatened destruction, modification, or 
curtailment of the species' habitats, particularly in the Palawan area, 
is a threat to the Philippine cockatoo throughout all of its range.

Factor B. Overutilization for Commercial, Recreational, Scientific, or 
Educational Purposes

Illegal Pet Trade

    The Philippine cockatoo, like all cockatoos, is a desirable pet 
(Cameron 2007, p. vii). In the Philippines, cockatoos are reported to 
be popular pets due to their ability to mimic human voices (Catigob-
Sinha 1993 in Boussekey 2000, p. 138). On Palawan, Pandanan, and Samar 
Islands, trapping these cockatoos for pets is a particularly serious 
threat (Widmann et al. 2010a, pp. 21-22; Widmann et al. 2010c, p. 16) 
and is still considered to be one of the most significant threats to 
the species. Awareness campaigns have been implemented since the late 
1990s to increase understanding of why these birds should not be 
removed from the wild for pets, and these campaigns are thought to be 
somewhat effective (Widmann et al. 2010). Due to the high value of 
these birds (valued at $160 U.S. dollars (USD) in Manila in 1997, and 
$300 USD in 2006 (BLI 2010a, p. 1), chicks are taken from virtually 
every accessible nest on these islands (Widmann et al. 2010a, pp. 21-
22). A researcher observed that, in the 1980s, up to 10 Philippine 
cockatoos were trapped per day (Tabaranza 1992 in BLI 2001, p. 1685).
    Several programs to combat the poaching problem, such as public 
awareness programs and the rehabilitation and release of confiscated 
parrots were established by the KFI to support the conservation of the 
Philippine cockatoo. KFI started these awareness programs to educate 
adults and children in villages near areas where the birds are 
concentrated. The programs use the Philippine cockatoo as a flagship 
species for conservation of native wildlife, especially with children, 
because the image of the endemic Philippine cockatoo is unique (Widmann 
et al. 2010, pp. 21-22). KFI focuses in areas where this species is 
found in the wild, such as the CMRPA, to educate the local communities 
in an attempt to reduce poaching. In 2005, on Palawan Island, KFI began 
an initiative specifically targeted toward anti-poaching in the CMRPA. 
Former poachers were identified and converted into wildlife wardens. 
This ``conversion'' practice is common in developing countries where 
human populations rely heavily on forests and wildlife for their 
survival (Cribb 2006, p. 3). These converted poachers-now-wardens 
safeguard the Philippine cockatoo nesting trees, and patrol and monitor 
inside CMRPA in the southwest region of Palawan (Widmann et al. 2010).
    Because illegal trade is difficult to monitor and quantify, it is 
unclear to what extent poaching for the pet trade is affecting this 
species. Considering that, in the early 1990s, the population was 
estimated to be only between 1,000 and 4,000 birds (Tabaranza 1992 and 
Lambert 1994 in BLI 2001, p. 1681), relatively high numbers were 
legally traded internationally in the 1980s (e.g., 422 birds were 
reported to have been exported in 1983; BLI 2010a, p. 1). Additionally, 
there is evidence that this species is still being poached in the wild 
(Widmann et al. 2010).
    Although we are unsure of the magnitude of the pet trade and its 
effect on the survival of this species, several reports describe how 
poaching remains a problem for parrot species, particularly in poorer 
countries (Dickson 2005, p. 548; http://www.philippinecockatoo.org, 
accessed February 14, 2011 and May 21, 2014). In areas with extreme 
poverty, poaching can be a lucrative and relatively risk-free source of 
income (Widmann et al. 2010c, p. 22; Dickson 2005, p. 548). In many 
cases, poachers have limited income prospects (Widmann et al. 2010a, p. 
37). A common practice in conservation is to reform poachers with 
alternative sources of income so that they do not remove birds from the 
wild. After the benefits of species and habitat conservation are 
explained to them, they are generally receptive to resource 
conservation and ultimately gain a sense of stewardship of the 
resources. This technique has been effective in the past, but it is 
resource-intensive and has only a localized effect.
    KFI also broadcasts local radio programs to increase awareness of 
the issues affecting this species. For example, in August 2010, KFI 
broadcast an interview regarding wildlife trade and a confiscation that 
had recently occurred in Palawan (Widmann et al. 2010c, p. 73). 
Conservation-focused radio programs have occurred here since 1996 
(Boussekey 2000, p. 140). However, even with these education programs 
and conservation measures in place, poaching still occurs in the 
Philippines (Widmann et al. 2010c). Based on the available information 
and the relatively small number of Philippine cockatoos remaining in 
the wild, we find that poaching for the pet trade in the Philippines 
negatively affects the Philippine cockatoo throughout all of its range.

International Trade and CITES

    In 1981, almost all Psittaciformes species (i.e., parrots) were 
included in Appendix II of CITES. As described under the Conservation 
Status for the Philippine Cockatoo section above, regulating import, 
export, and re-export of CITES-listed animal and plant species and 
their parts and products is done through the use of a permitting system 
(http://www.cites.org). In the United States, CITES is implemented 
through the U.S. Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (ESA; 16 
U.S.C. 1531 et seq.).
    The Philippine cockatoo was transferred to CITES Appendix I in June 
1992 because populations were declining rapidly due to uncontrolled 
trapping for the pet bird trade. An Appendix-I listing includes species 
threatened with extinction whose trade is permitted only under 
exceptional circumstances, which generally precludes commercial trade. 
The import of an Appendix-I species requires the issuance of both an 
import and export permit. Import permits are issued only if findings 
are made that the import would be for purposes that are not detrimental 
to the survival of the species in the wild and that the specimen will 
not be used for primarily commercial purposes (CITES Article III(3)). 
Export permits are issued only if findings are made that the specimen 
was legally acquired and trade is not detrimental to the survival of 
the species (CITES Appendix III(2)). These two findings are made prior 
to issuance of a CITES permit and are designed to ensure that 
international trade in a CITES-listed species is not detrimental to 
that species.
    An exception to permitting requirements for international trade of 
Appendix I species exists for specimens originating from a CITES-
registered captive-breeding operation. Under the exception in the CITES 
Treaty and Resolution Conf. 12.10 (Rev. CoP15), specimens of Appendix-I 
species originating from CITES-registered captive-breeding operations 
can be traded for commercial purposes, and shipments need to be 
accompanied only by an export permit issued by the exporting country. 
An import permit is not required because these specimens

[[Page 35878]]

are treated as CITES Appendix-II species. One CITES-registered captive-
breeding operation in the Philippines is authorized to export captive-
bred specimens of this species (http://www.cites.org/common/reg/e_cb.html, accessed May 19, 2014). Countries operating CITES-registered 
operations must ensure that the operation ``will make a continuing 
meaningful contribution according to the conservation needs of the 
species'' (CITES 2007b, pp. 1-2). Countries that are parties to CITES 
are advised to restrict their imports of Appendix-I captive-bred 
specimens to those coming only from CITES-registered operations. 
Additional information on CITES-registered operations can be found on 
the CITES Web site at http://www.cites.org/eng/resources/registers.html.
    We queried the United Nations Environment Programme World 
Conservation Monitoring Centre (UNEP-WCMC) CITES Trade Database for 
data on exports and imports of this species from 2000 to 2009, and 
again between 2009 and 2013, and very few exports from the Philippines 
were reported as ``wild'' origin. Little to no trade data was available 
for 2013. Between 2000 and 2009, CITES Party countries reported to 
UNEP-WCMC that a total of 91 live Philippine cockatoos was imported 
(http://trade.cites.org) into their countries, for an average of 9 
birds per year. The majority of these (78) originated from the 
Philippines; 77 of these 78 live birds were reported to be of captive 
origin, and only one was indicated to be of wild origin. Additionally, 
in 2009, the UNEP-WCMC CITES Trade Database indicated that only two 
live birds were exported from the Philippines. Because the Philippine 
cockatoo is listed as an Appendix-I species under CITES, legal 
commercial international trade is very limited. The trade report we ran 
in 2014 (which only has trade data up to 2013), indicated that there 
were captive-origin exports of the Philippine cockatoo, but no exports 
of wild-origin Philippine cockatoos. In summary, 233 total specimens 
were traded 2000-2012. Of the 244 traded over this period, only 4 were 
from the wild and from the Philippines. Based on the low numbers of 
live, wild Philippine cockatoos in international trade since 2000, and 
because international trade is controlled via valid CITES permits, we 
believe that trade is not a threat to the species.
Wild Bird Conservation Act
    The import into the United States of all three of these species is 
regulated by the Wild Bird Conservation Act (WBCA) (16 U.S.C. 4901 et 
seq.), which was enacted on October 23, 1992. The WBCA is implemented 
under 50 CFR part 15 and has limited or prohibited imports of exotic 
bird species into the United States since 1992. The purpose of the WBCA 
is to promote the conservation of exotic birds by ensuring that 
importation of species covered under the Act (i.e., CITES-listed 
species, with several exceptions) into the United States is sustainable 
and is not detrimental to the species.
    WBCA permits may be issued to allow import of listed birds for 
various purposes, such as scientific research, zoological breeding or 
display, or personal pets, when certain criteria are met. The Service 
may approve cooperative breeding programs and subsequently issue import 
permits under such programs. Under the cooperative breeding program, 
wild-caught birds may be imported into the United States if they are a 
part of Service-approved management plans for sustainable use. At this 
time, none of the three parrot species discussed in this document is 
part of a Service-approved cooperative breeding program, and there are 
no approved management plans for wild-caught birds of these species.
    A report published in 2006 showed that imports of parrot species to 
the United States declined from the mid-1980s to 1991 (Pain et al. 
2006, pp. 322-324). Parrot imports to the United States were already 
declining before the enactment of the WBCA, but because the WBCA 
largely curtailed the import of wild parrots, we find it is an adequate 
regulatory mechanism for all three of these parrot species.

Summary of Factor B

    In summary, cockatoos are popular pets, and poaching for the pet 
trade still occurs, particularly on Pandanan Island (Widmann et al. 
2010c, p. 13). Although we do not find that legal international trade 
negatively impacts this species, we do find that poaching for the pet 
trade in the Philippines continues to negatively impact the Philippine 
cockatoo.

Factor C. Disease or Predation

    In the information provided and the literature reviewed, we found 
suggestions that diseases, particularly a fungal disease, in the wild 
may be a threat to this species. Velogenic viscerotropic newcastle 
disease, psittacine beak and feather disease (PBFD), or the psittacid 
herpes virus (PsHV-1 or PsHV-2) were indicated to be possible threats 
and may have been introduced into the wild population, possibly by the 
release of captive birds (BLI 2010a, p. 1; Lambert 1994 in BLI 2001, p. 
1686). Cockatoo species are widely distributed throughout Australasia, 
and some avian species have developed resistance to some diseases 
(Commonwealth of Australia 2006, p. 1). These diseases affect each 
cockatoo species differently.

Psittacine Beak and Feather Disease

    PBFD is a viral disease that originated in Australia and affects 
both wild and captive birds, causing chronic infections resulting in 
either feather loss or deformities of beak and feathers (Cameron 2007, 
p. 82). PBFD causes immunodeficiency and affects body parts such as the 
feathers, liver, and brain. Suppression of the immune system can result 
in secondary infections due to other viruses, bacteria, or fungi. The 
disease can occur without obvious signs (de Kloet and de Kloet 2004, p. 
2394). Birds usually become infected in the nest by ingesting or 
inhaling viral particles. Infected birds develop immunity, die within a 
couple of weeks, or become chronically infected. No vaccine exists to 
immunize populations (Cameron 2007, p. 82). While some cockatoo species 
are susceptible to this virus, we found no indication that PBFD 
adversely affects the Philippine cockatoo at the population level in 
the wild.

Proventricular Dilatation Disease

    Another serious disease that has been reported to affect cockatoos 
is proventricular dilatation disease (PDD). PDD is a fatal disease that 
may pose a serious threat to domesticated and wild parrots worldwide, 
particularly those with very small populations (Kistler et al. 2008, p. 
1; Waugh 1996, p. 112). This contagious disease causes damage to the 
nerves of the upper digestive tract, so that food digestion and 
absorption are negatively affected. The disease has a 100 percent 
mortality rate in affected birds, although the exact manner of 
transmission between birds is unclear. Although this is a particularly 
virulent virus that affects cockatoos in general, we are unaware of any 
reports that this disease occurs in Philippine cockatoos in the wild, 
possibly due to its remote location.

Avian Influenza

    Wild birds, especially waterfowl and shorebirds, are natural 
reservoirs of avian influenza (also known as ``bird flu''). Most 
strains of the avian influenza virus have low pathogenicity and cause 
few clinical signs in infected birds. Pathogenicity is the ability of a 
pathogen to produce an infectious

[[Page 35879]]

disease in an organism. However, strains can mutate into highly 
pathogenic forms, which is what happened in 1997, when the highly 
pathogenic avian influenza virus (called H5N1) first appeared in Hong 
Kong (USDA et al. 2006, pp. 1-2). H5N1 is mainly propagated by 
commercial poultry living in close quarters with humans. The effect on 
migratory birds is less clear (Metz 2006a, p. 24).
    Scientists increasingly believe that at least some migratory 
waterfowl carry H5N1, sometimes over long distances, and introduce the 
virus to poultry flocks (World Health Organization 2006, p. 2). H5N1 
has infected and caused death in domestic poultry, people, and some 
wild birds in Asia, Europe, and Africa. About half of humans infected 
die from the disease (Service 2006, p. 1). A parrot held in quarantine 
in the United Kingdom was incorrectly diagnosed with H5N1 in 2005. The 
original identification of H5N1 was made from a pool of tissues derived 
from a Pionus parrot (from Surinam) and another avian species commonly 
known as a mesia (Leiothrix spp.) from Taiwan. The Department for 
Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, United Kingdom (DEFRA) stated that 
it was unclear whether the virus isolated came from the parrot tissue, 
the mesia tissue, or both (DEFRA 2005, p. 34). However, they concluded 
that the source was more likely the sample from the mesia (DEFRA 2005, 
p. 34). Later, it was determined that the samples had been mixed, and 
the parrot did not have the disease (Gauthier-Clerc et al. 2007, p. 
208). In the Philippines, 339 smuggled parrots were euthanized 
following confiscation to determine if these parrots had the virus; 
however, none were confirmed to have the virus (Metz 2006a, pp. 24-25), 
we are unaware of any reports that this disease occurs in Philippine 
cockatoos in the wild.

Aspergillosis

    Aspergillosis is an infection or allergic response to the 
Aspergillus fungus. A literature review found that cases of 
Aspergillosis were being reported in captive-held, wild-origin 
Philippine cockatoos in the Philippines at the U.S. Air Force Base, 
Clark Field, Angeles City (Burr 1981, p. 21). In all known cases 
according to the report, stress, such as enclosure in a small bird 
cage, was indicated to be a factor prior to death. Observations 
indicated that free-flying birds in aviaries showed no signs of stress, 
and there were no deaths recorded in these birds. Natural incidence of 
Aspergillosis in the wild occurs in the Philippine cockatoo; however, 
it appears to be more prevalent in captive birds. During one survey, 
Aspergillus spores were found below nest holes in Palawan (Lambert 1994 
in BLI 2001, p. 1686; Tabaranza 1992). The Philippine cockatoo is 
likely a latent carrier of Aspergillus (Burr 1981, p. 23); however, 
from our review of the best available information, we found no 
information indicating that this disease negatively affects this 
species at the population level in the wild (Widmann et al. 2010c, p. 
45).

Lice and Mites

    Ectoparasitism by lice and mites was documented as the possible 
cause of death in some chick mortalities on Rasa Island (Widmann et al. 
2010a, pp. 6, 38; Widmann et al. 2001, p. 146). Mites (arachnids) were 
found in some monitored nests where chicks had died. Although nests are 
being routinely monitored on Rasa Island, mites are not commonly found 
in these nests. Mites have evolved in a symbiotic relationship with 
avian species. Not all bird-mite relationships are parasitic; some 
might be benign or even beneficial (Proctor and Owens 2000, pp. 358, 
362). Many mites are nonparasitic scavengers and use the nest or bird 
feathers as habitat. Despite the presence of mites found in nests where 
chick mortalities were observed, we conducted a search of available 
information and found no information indicating that lice and mites 
significantly affect these species, although mites may occur more 
frequently during dryer seasons (Widmann et al. 2010a, p. 38; Widmann 
et al. 2010c, pp. 39, 45). Some research suggested that unusually high 
temperature, rather than mites, may have contributed to the lack of 
nest success in 2001 (Widmann et al. 2010c, p. 45); however, the actual 
reasons for nest failures (mortalities) are unclear.

Summary of Factor C

    When conducting a status review, we evaluate the magnitude of each 
factor that may be affecting a species. In this case, we did not find 
evidence that any disease or predation rises to the level of a threat 
that is affecting this species in the wild. Although individual 
Philippine cockatoos may be subject to occasional infections or 
predation, there is no evidence that either of these is occurring at a 
level that may affect the status of the species as a whole to the 
extent that it is considered a threat to the species. After conducting 
a literature search (Tomaszewski et al. 2006, pp. 536-544; de Kloet 
2004, pp. 2393-2412; Latimer et al. 1992, pp. 165-168; Johnson et al. 
1986, pp. 813-815), we found no indication that disease or predation is 
a threat to the Philippine cockatoo in the wild. Therefore, we find 
that the Philippine cockatoo is not negatively impacted due to disease 
or predation.

Factor D. The Inadequacy of Existing Regulatory Mechanisms

    Several regulatory mechanisms are in place at the national and 
local levels that serve to conserve this species and the habitat on 
which it depends; however, the mechanisms are ineffective at adequately 
protecting the Philippine cockatoo. We find that CITES effectively 
protects the species through legal international trade. Factors 
hampering the regulatory mechanisms in place include remoteness of 
protected areas, poverty that causes locals to unsustainably use this 
species' habitat or to poach, and the lack of resources to adequately 
enforce laws and regulations (Laurance 2007, p. 1544; Palawan Council 
for Sustainable Development (PCSD) 2007, pp. 1-3; Galang 2004, p. 17). 
These are discussed below.
Domestic Regulatory Mechanisms
    In the late 1980s and early 1990s, efforts were already under way 
to protect the Philippine cockatoo (Galang 2004, p. 17; Boussekey 2000, 
p. 140). In 1987, the Government of the Philippines established the 
Protected Areas and Wildlife Bureau (PAWB) through the DENR, under 
Executive Order 192. Its responsibilities are in part to manage and 
protect the country's protected areas. In 1992, the Philippines adopted 
the National Integrated Protected Areas System Act (NIPAS Act of 1992) 
to protect and maintain the country's biological diversity. In 1994, 
the PAWB signed a memorandum of agreement (MOA) regarding the 
conservation of this species (Philippines DENR 2009, pp. 1-2; Boussekey 
2000, p. 138). This MOA has been implemented by a nongovernmental 
organization, the Katala Foundation, since 2006 through the PCCP. Under 
this MOA, an intensive species conservation program has been under way 
to conserve this species and its habitat. The PCCP accomplishes its 
mission through intense local management of the species. Some aspects 
of the conservation program are to educate local communities about the 
benefits of conserving endemic wildlife, protect and restore nesting 
sites and habitat, conduct research, and reintroduce the species into 
the wild (Widmann et al. 2010, p. 22).
    As a protected species (DENR 2010b, p. 2), under the Republic Act 
No. 9147, certain activities such as capture and trade of live wildlife 
are prohibited. Republic Act No. 9147 provides for fines and penalties 
for prohibited acts.

[[Page 35880]]

However, within the Philippines, the laws are generally ignored and 
only poorly enforced (Rose 2008, p. 232; Laurance 2007, p. 1544; Galang 
2004, pp. 12-17).
    Additional protections exist under the Philippines' Executive Order 
No. 247, which protects the rights of local people with respect to the 
use of natural resources (http://www.elaw.gov, accessed January 4, 
2011). This Executive Order mandates that prospecting of biological and 
genetic resources shall be allowed within the ancestral lands and 
domains of indigenous cultural communities only with the prior informed 
consent of such communities. Involving local tribal communities adds an 
additional conservation measure. For example, the Batak tribe 
(Boussekey 2000, p. 144) in northern Palawan has shown interest in 
participating in wildlife conservation. The protection of endemic 
natural resources has been demonstrated to benefit native tribes and 
local communities near sites that have unique features (Widmann et al. 
2010b, p. 36). Locals may be recruited as wardens, or these areas can 
be developed for ecotourism. However, in this case, it is likely that 
only around 300 to 400 members of the Batak tribe survive today, so the 
effectiveness in the long term is unclear (http://www.culturalsurvival.org/search/site/batak, accessed November 18, 2010 
and May 22, 2014). These regulatory mechanisms could have a positive 
effect on the species, but currently it is unclear whether Executive 
Order No. 247 is benign or actually constructive.
    As discussed under Factor B, the Philippine cockatoo is monitored 
and managed in some, but not all, areas where it exists. Some areas are 
designated as protected specifically for the Philippine cockatoo, and 
wardens are employed for their protection (Widmann et al. 2010a, pp. 
18-22; and refer to Conservation Status for the Philippine Cockatoo 
section above). An increase in the population is occurring in some 
areas where this species is protected, such as on Rasa Island, but in 
other areas where protections are not robust, the population is 
declining (Widmann et al. 2010a, p. 32). Although five areas are 
designated as being ``protected'' under Philippine law, the levels of 
protection in each area vary. In 2006, Rasa Island, the area containing 
the densest population of the Philippine cockatoo, was declared a 
wildlife sanctuary by President Arroyo (Widmann 2006, p. 1). The 
protected area consists of 1,983 ha (4,900 ac). While this area is 
fairly well protected and monitored, effective reserve management here 
is hindered by a shortage of staff, technical expertise, and financial 
support (Widmann 2010, pers. comm.). In addition, the remoteness of 
protected areas makes enforcement of activities such as poaching and 
illegal logging difficult. Overall, the management of protected areas 
is insufficient. For example, in 2010, despite management of the 
species, 15 hatchlings died and 17 eggs did not hatch on Rasa Island 
during an extreme weather event (refer to Factor E discussion) (Widmann 
et al. 2010a, p. 38). Even in areas, such as Narra, that are monitored 
by wardens, poaching occurs (Widmann et al. 2010a, p. 6). The 
protections in place for this species are ultimately ineffective at 
reducing the factors that negatively impact this species. This species 
resides in other areas that are not protected and habitat destruction 
(see Factor A discussion above) and poaching for the pet trade (see 
Factor B discussion above) still occur even in protected zones.
    The Philippine cockatoo is carefully monitored and managed in some, 
but not all, areas where it exists. The species exists in five 
protected areas: (1) Rasa Island Wildlife Sanctuary (Narra, Palawan), 
(2) Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park (Palawan), (3) 
Omoi and Manambaling Cockatoo Reserves in Dumaran (Dumaran, Palawan), 
(4) Mt. Mantalingahan Protected Landscape (CMRPA) in Rizal, Palawan, 
and (5) Samar Island Natural Park. Each protected area in Palawan has 
its own unique protections in place and legislation to protect the 
species and its habitat (Widmann and Widmann 2010, pers. comm.).
    Although five areas are designated as being ``protected,'' the 
levels of protection vary. An increase in the population is occurring 
in some areas, but in other areas where protections are not as robust; 
the population is declining, in part due to poaching. The KFI, the 
Philippine Government, and individuals concerned with the conservation 
of this species have actively worked to protect the Philippine cockatoo 
since 1998. The KFI is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the 
conservation of wild Philippine cockatoos. Its goals are to teach the 
principles and value of conservation, work to rehabilitate Philippine 
cockatoos back into the wild, and conduct scientific research. As of 
2000, the local communities that live within the range of this species 
have been aware that it is illegal to capture or trade this species 
(Boussekey 2000, p. 143).
    At most sites where a viable population appears to exist, KFI is 
actively managing this species to try to increase the populations. For 
example, artificial nest boxes for the Philippine cockatoo were 
installed on Rasa Island and the mainland (Palawan) (Widmann and 
Widmann 2008, p. 27). Recovery of the Philippine cockatoo on Rasa 
Island has been fairly effective, where nest-guarding by local people 
has virtually stopped poaching (Boussekey, pers. comm. in Cahill et al. 
2006, p. 166). Breeding success on Rasa Island has been high (averaging 
2.6 hatchlings per nest in 2002, for example). On this island, a 
population of approximately 20 birds increased four-fold between 1998 
and 2003 (Widmann et al. 2010; Boussekey, pers. comm. in Cahill et al. 
2006, p. 166). In Patnanungan, Polillo Islands, the first artificial 
nest box for the Philippine cockatoo was installed in November 2009 
(Widmann et al. 2010, p. 13), and reforestation efforts are occurring. 
These activities are somewhat effective but slow because the protection 
efforts are not able to completely combat the negative factors such as 
poaching and selective logging that affect this species in many cases.
    Efforts are being focused on Pandanan Island (south of Palawan 
Island), which has excellent habitat for this species, and is a focus 
area of KFI for protection of the Philippine cockatoo. A grant under 
the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's Wildlife Without Borders, 
Critically Endangered Species Conservation Fund, for the Pandanan 
project was approved in September 2009 (Widmann et al. 2010, p. 5). 
This island has the potential for the species to recover well because 
there is excellent forest cover due in part to the protections provided 
by the Jewelmer Corporation. This company holds an aquaculture 
concession in the area of Pandanan. Due to this concession, human 
inhabitants are allowed on Pandanan Island but activities are carefully 
and closely monitored and regulated. In January 2010, KFI obtained 
formal permission from the Palawan Council for Sustainable Development 
(PCSD) to conduct conservation efforts on the island (Widmann et al. 
2010b, p. 5). Poaching still needs to be abated, but KFI has been 
working to establish a local warden program (Widmann et al. 2010a, p. 
50) on the island to address this issue. As of 2010, security had 
improved in the area where a viable cockatoo population has been 
confirmed, but the species was still threatened by poaching (Widmann et 
al. 2010a, p. 15). The KFI indicates that it is likely that, with the 
warden program in place, they can eliminate or reduce poaching.

[[Page 35881]]

    As resources allow, other protections and conservation actions are 
in place for this species. On Dumaran, Rizal, and Patnanungan Islands, 
wardens monitor Philippine cockatoo activity, and patrolling is done at 
protected areas and roost sites. Monitoring of the population trend on 
Rasa and Dumaran Islands is done through counting individuals at 
traditional roost sites. Due to both a lack of funding and logistics, 
not all Philippine cockatoo sites are actively monitored and managed. 
This is primarily because it is more efficient to focus resources in 
the Palawan Islands Region where the Philippine cockatoo is known to 
have a viable population.
    In summary, while laws to protect this species are in place, 
enforcement often is difficult, given the many islands that make up the 
Philippines and considering that illegal activities in many cases 
remain socially acceptable at the local level. Illegal logging is 
considered to be a leading cause of forest degradation in the 
Philippines (Rose 2008, p. 232; Laurance 2007, p. 1544; Galang 2004, 
pp. 12-17). Laws are frequently ignored, which further reduces the 
effectiveness of regulatory mechanisms (Galang 2004, pp. 12-17), and 
contributes to this species' continued decline in population numbers. 
Therefore, we find that, although the Philippines has a good legal 
framework to manage wildlife and their habitats, actual implementation 
of its laws and regulatory mechanisms is inadequate to reduce the 
threats to the Philippine cockatoo.
CITES
    The evaluation of the effectiveness of CITES as a regulatory 
mechanism is cross-referenced under Factor B.
    With respect to international trade, we find CITES to be an 
adequate existing regulatory mechanism for this species (see our 
analysis under Factor B for legal trade). As discussed under Factor B, 
very few Philippine cockatoos have been legally exported from the 
Philippines since 2000. One operation in the Philippines is registered 
to export captive-bred specimens of this species for commercial 
purposes and appears to be adequately monitored and regulated. Based on 
the information available, CITES and the Government of the Philippines 
have effectively controlled legal international trade of this species.

Summary of Factor D

    In summary, we find that the Government of the Philippines appears 
to have controlled legal international trade through CITES (see 
discussion under Factor B above). However, the existing domestic 
regulatory mechanisms within the Philippines, as implemented, are 
inadequate to reduce or remove the current threats to the Philippine 
cockatoo in the wild based on reports of poaching. As discussed under 
Factor B above, uncontrolled illegal domestic trade continues to 
adversely impact the Philippine cockatoo. Measures in place via the MOA 
and the KFI provide some protection to the Philippine cockatoo. Through 
the MOA, this species is carefully monitored and managed in key areas 
where the species has a good chance of recovery, particularly in the 
Rasa Island Wildlife Sanctuary (Narra, Palawan). Despite efforts, 
management of protected areas encompassing this species' habitat is 
hindered due to the remoteness of protected areas, staff shortages, 
lack of technical expertise, and lack of funding; this is acknowledged 
by the local NGO (Widmann et al. 2010a).
    Even with government controls, poaching of cockatoos is reported to 
be relatively common in areas that are not protected. In addition, laws 
are frequently ignored, in part due to the difficulty in monitoring and 
enforcement throughout the multitude of islands in the Philippines. As 
discussed under Factors A and B above, we found that poaching, logging, 
and conversion of forests to agriculture and plantations are threats to 
the Philippine cockatoo. Despite regulatory mechanisms in place, 
illegal logging continues to be a leading cause of forest degradation 
in the Philippines (Rose 2008, p. 231; Laurance 2007, pp. 1544-1555). 
There is no information available to suggest these threats will change 
in the foreseeable future; therefore, we find that the existing 
regulatory mechanisms, as implemented, are inadequate to reduce or 
remove the current threats to the Philippine cockatoo.

Factor E. Other Natural or Manmade Factors Affecting the Continued 
Existence of the Species

    Various other factors have been cited as being potential threats to 
this species. In addition to poaching, trapping, and deforestation 
(Boussekey 2000, p. 138) (refer to the discussions under Factors A and 
B, above), hunting (to protect crops), harassment by bees, and nest 
flooding have been observed to affect this species (Widmann et al. 
2007a, pp. 76-77, 79; Widmann et al. 2001, pp. 139-140). Because this 
species has been viewed as an agricultural pest, it was often killed if 
it was thought to be consuming crops (Widmann and Widmann 2008, p. 23). 
However, there is no indication that this practice still occurs. Nest 
flooding during a thunderstorm was observed to affect clutch survival 
during the 2000-2001 breeding season on Rasa Island (Widmann et al. 
2001, pp. 139-140). Although nest flooding may occur occasionally, the 
KFI indicates that it is not a common occurrence, and we do not 
consider this to be a threat to the species.
    Bees have been observed to attack cockatoos. In 2005, on 
Patnanungan Island, bees were documented attacking Philippine cockatoos 
(Widmann et al. 2007a, pp. 76-77, 79). These cockatoos were unable to 
nest due to the close proximity of a beehive. The extent of competition 
with bees for nesting sites is not clear. Philippine cockatoos have 
been monitored for many years, and this is the only known report of 
nest site competition with bees. Therefore, competition from bees does 
not appear to be a significant factor affecting this species.
    Other factors affecting the species include food shortages due to 
drought and the lack of suitable nesting cavities (Widmann and Widmann 
2008, p. 25). The lack of suitable nesting sites in general is 
addressed under Factor A. In 2005, this species suffered from 
starvation on Rasa Island due to a food shortage during an El 
Ni[ntilde]o drought year. However, several fledglings were rescued. Of 
these, 10 developed normally and were subsequently released (Widmann 
and Widmann 2008, p. 25). Additional factors affecting the species 
include the lack of suitable nesting cavities (in large, decayed trees) 
and possibly the lack of adequate food sources (Widmann et al. 2010a, 
p. 6). Because this species has specific nutrition and habitat 
requirements, it was suggested that Rasa Island may be at carrying 
capacity due to limited habitat and food availability (Widmann and 
Widmann 2008, p. 25). Because Rasa Island is very small, with only 1.75 
km\2\ (0.6 mi\2\) of the island being coastal and mangrove forest, its 
suitable habitat is limited. As of 2009, Rasa Island had 64 nest trees, 
and as of 2010, there were 280 individual Philippine cockatoos on this 
island. A second starvation event occurred in 2010 (Widmann et al. 
2010a, p. 6). At this time, we are unable to determine if limited food 
availability on this island and starvation due to drought are threats; 
however, the Rasa Island population is carefully monitored by the KFI, 
and they intervene and manage the species if needed. Although in some 
years limited food availability may be a concern, we do not find that 
this factor rises to the level of a threat to the species. Further, the 
lack of suitable nesting cavities is being monitored and addressed by 
the KFI. At

[[Page 35882]]

this time, we have no evidence that bees or nest flooding are threats 
to the species.
Small and Declining Population
    The Philippine cockatoo has a constricted geographic range and a 
small, rapidly declining population, primarily due to poaching. 
Researchers estimate between 450 and 1,245 individuals remain in the 
wild, distributed on 8 islands (BLI 2011, p. 1). In many cases, the 
Philippine cockatoo is geographically isolated from other populations 
due to the distance between islands. Additionally, because it is an 
island species that generally mates for life and is long-lived, it is 
extremely vulnerable to localized extinctions. Species with small 
populations are significantly influenced by individual birth and death 
rates (Holsinger 2000, pp. 64-65; Young and Clarke 2000, pp. 361-366; 
Gilpin and Soul[eacute] 1986, p. 27), immigration and emigration rates, 
and changes in population sex ratios. Natural variation in survival and 
reproductive success of individuals and chance disequilibrium of sex 
ratios may act in concert to negatively affect reproduction (Gilpin and 
Soul[eacute] 1986, p. 27).
    Prior to the 1980s, the Philippine cockatoo was common throughout 
the Philippines (Cameron 2007, p. 34; Boussekey 2000, p. 138). Its 
existing populations are extremely localized due to habitat loss and 
its preference for lowland primary and secondary forest, which is also 
preferred human habitat. KFI suggests that a rapid population reduction 
may occur in the future based on low recruitment (successful 
development of chicks into breeding adults), especially for unprotected 
populations (Widmann 2011a, pers. comm.). In the Rizal (South Palawan) 
area, there are no indications of recovery of this species. Only one 
breeding pair exists outside of this cockatoo reserve, and the area had 
been poached at least once between 2008 and 2011. Breeding here did not 
occur during the 2009-2010 season. Because all nests have been 
systematically poached in this area over many years, extinction of this 
population might occur suddenly due to lack of reproductive success. 
This is partly a consequence of mating characteristics of this species: 
It is long-lived and generally mates for life. At least two birds 
persist inside the protected area, but as of 2011, they had not bred in 
the past 4 years (Widmann 2011a, pers. comm.).
    Small, isolated populations of wildlife species such as the 
Philippine cockatoo that have gone through a reduction in population 
numbers can be susceptible to demographic and genetic problems (Shaffer 
1981, pp. 130-134). Factors that could affect their susceptibility 
include: Natural variation in survival and reproductive success of 
individuals; changes in gene frequencies due to genetic drift; 
diminished genetic diversity and associated effects due to inbreeding 
(i.e., inbreeding depression); dispersal of just a few individuals; a 
few clutch failures; a skewed sex ratio in recruited offspring over 
just one or a few years; and chance mortality of just a few 
reproductive-age individuals. These small, rapidly declining 
populations are also susceptible to natural levels of environmental 
variability and related ``catastrophic'' events (e.g., severe storms, 
extreme cold spells, wildfire), which we refer to as environmental 
stochasticity (Dunham et al. 1999, p. 9; Mangel and Tier 1994, p. 612; 
Young 1994, pp. 410-412).
    Threats to species typically operate synergistically. Initial 
effects of one threat factor can later exacerbate the effects of other 
threat factors (Gilpin and Soul[eacute] 1986, pp. 25-26). Any further 
fragmentation of populations may likely result in the further removal 
or dispersal of individuals. The lack of a sufficient number of 
individuals in a local area or a decline in their individual or 
collective fitness may also cause a decline in the population size, 
despite the presence of suitable habitat patches.
    The combined effects of habitat loss and fragmentation (Factor A) 
and threats associated with small, declining, and isolated populations 
(Factor E) on a species' population are referred to as patch dynamics. 
Patch dynamics can have profound effects on fragmented populations and 
can potentially reduce a species' effective population by orders of 
magnitude (Gilpin and Soul[eacute] 1986, p. 31). For example, an 
increase in habitat fragmentation can separate populations to the point 
where individuals can no longer disperse and breed among habitat 
patches, causing a shift in the demographic characteristics of a 
population and a reduction in genetic fitness (Gilpin and Soul[eacute] 
1986, p. 31). Furthermore, as a species' population continues to 
decline, often as a result of deterministic forces such as habitat loss 
or overutilization, it becomes increasingly vulnerable to a broad array 
of other forces. Despite the mitigation and conservation measures in 
place, if this trend continues, its ultimate extinction due to one or 
more stochastic events becomes more likely. Given the species' 
dispersed nature, the fact that it is a long-lived species that 
generally mates for life, and that the largest population is 
approximately 280 individuals, we find that this factor threatens the 
continued existence of this species. Based on the best scientific and 
commercial information available, we conclude that, based on its small, 
rapidly declining population, the Philippine cockatoo is at risk of 
extinction, particularly when combined with the other threats.

Summary of Factor E

    Several other factors were identified as affecting the success of 
this species, such as harassment by bees, nest flooding, and 
starvation. These factors are a normal occurrence in the ecology of 
this species, and we do not find that these factors significantly 
affect this species such that they rise to the level of a threat. 
However, we find that its small, rapidly declining population, when 
combined with the other threats of habitat loss and poaching, is a 
threat to the species throughout its range.
Finding for the Philippine Cockatoo
    We considered the five factors in assessing whether the Philippine 
cockatoo is endangered or threatened throughout all of its range. We 
examined the best scientific and commercial information available 
regarding the past, present, and future threats faced by the Philippine 
cockatoo, and we consulted with recognized Philippine cockatoo experts 
and local and international NGOs.
    The primary factors affecting the Philippine cockatoo include 
habitat loss and habitat degradation (Factor A) and poaching for the 
pet trade (Factor B). Habitat loss associated with logging, an 
expanding human population and associated development, and conversion 
of lowland forests to agriculture are some of the greatest threats to 
the continued survival of this species (Widmann et al. 2010, p. 14; 
Posa et al. 2008, pp. 231-236; Widmann and Widmann 2008, p. 23; BLI 
2001, p. 1685; Galang 2004, pp. 5-22). Habitat loss due to the above 
activities continues to occur; this species' population is declining 
rangewide as a result.
    Based on the best available information, poaching is still 
occurring, despite education and public awareness campaigns and 
protections in place at the national level (Widmann et al. 2010c., p. 
13). Awareness campaigns have been conducted on Mindanao, Palawan, and 
Polillo Islands (Widmann 2010, pers. comm.). On Dumaran Island, the 
Katala Pride Campaign has focused on raising awareness among students 
and farmers. Trilingual conservation posters have been distributed 
throughout the Philippines, and in

[[Page 35883]]

1992, a captive-breeding program was initiated. This species is being 
intensely managed in some areas, but the management and protection of 
the species is hindered by the lack of resources, its remote island 
habitat, and by this species' life-history characteristics (such as the 
tendency to mate for life and not to reproduce until a late age). 
Efforts to improve the habitat of this species (e.g., reforestation, 
building of nest boxes) are continuing and may improve its habitat and 
population numbers. In Polillo, Dumaran, and Rasa, the species may be 
slowly increasing in population numbers, but in other areas, the 
species' population continues to decline. The best population estimates 
of this species were compiled in the early 1990s, at which time the 
population was estimated to be between 1,000 and 4,000 individuals 
(Snyder et al. 2000). Experts believe the population is between 450 and 
1,245 individuals, and most populations are fairly well monitored 
(Widmann et al. 2010); however, poaching for the domestic pet trade 
continues to be a threat to the species. It is unlikely that this 
species' rapidly declining and small population can withstand this 
level of poaching. Therefore, we find overutilization for commercial, 
recreational, scientific, or educational purposes (Factor B) is a 
threat to the Philippine cockatoo.
    We found no evidence that diseases significantly affect the wild 
Philippine cockatoo population. Other avian species, particularly 
cockatoo species, are susceptible to avian diseases, but there was no 
evidence that disease occurs in the wild to an extent that it is a 
threat to this species. Predation was not found to affect Philippine 
cockatoo populations. Based on the best available information, we 
conclude that disease and predation (Factor C) are not threats to the 
species.
    The Philippine cockatoo is classified as a protected species by the 
Philippine Government. The current range of the Philippine cockatoo is 
much smaller than its historical range (BLI 2013a, p. 6). However, as a 
result of conservation efforts by the various entities working to 
ensure long-term conservation of the Philippine cockatoo, its range may 
slowly increase, but current efforts are indicating mixed levels of 
success. Despite conservation efforts of various entities, we have 
determined that existing regulatory mechanisms continue to be 
inadequate because habitat loss and poaching are still occurring 
(Factor D). In summary, we conclude that inadequate regulatory 
mechanisms are a threat to the Philippine cockatoo.
    This species has a small and rapidly declining population that no 
longer exists in many of the areas where it occurred historically; it 
is in competition with humans for habitat as development and related 
infrastructure take the place of its habitat. Within its current range, 
where there are few viable populations remaining, the PCCP is managing 
the species to the best of its ability; however, the PCCP acknowledges 
that this species still faces a rapid population decline in the future 
based on low recruitment, especially for unprotected populations. When 
combined with other threats, and when considering its fragmented 
population, we conclude that its small, rapidly declining population is 
a threat to the species (Factor E). Due to this species' extremely 
small, declining, and fragmented population and due to the existing 
threats (Factors A, B, D, and E), it is currently in danger of 
extinction.
    Despite the conservation measures in place, this species faces 
severe threats, and the population trend for this species continues to 
decline. Based on our review of the best available scientific and 
commercial information pertaining to the five factors, we find that the 
Philippine cockatoo is in danger of extinction (endangered) throughout 
all of its range. We do not find that the effects of current threats 
acting on the species are likely to be sufficiently ameliorated in the 
foreseeable future. These threats are consistent throughout its range. 
Therefore, we find that listing the Philippine cockatoo as endangered 
is warranted throughout its range, and we are listing the Philippine 
cockatoo as endangered under the ESA.

Species Information

B. White cockatoo (Cacatua alba)

Taxonomy and Species Description

    The white cockatoo is also known as the umbrella cockatoo. ITIS, 
CITES, and BirdLife International recognize the species as Cacatua alba 
(BLI 2013b, p. 5). Therefore, we accept the species as C. alba. The 
white cockatoo is completely white except for the underside of its 
wings and tail, which are pale yellow. It has a long, backward-curving 
white crest on its head. Its bill is grey-black, and it has a white 
bare eye-ring. The bird has either yellowish-white or slightly grey-
blue legs.

Population Estimates

    Population estimates for the white cockatoo vary, in part due to 
the remoteness of the islands where this species exists. Population 
estimates prior to 2000 indicated that the Lalobata protected area on 
Halmahera Island contained between 28,500 and 42,900 white cockatoos 
(Snyder et al. 2000, p. 67; MacKinnon et al. 1995), although they did 
not survey lowland forest, which they thought may contain more white 
cockatoos. The white cockatoo was described as being common in the 
early 1990s. Survey work carried out in 1991 and 1992 suggested a 
population estimate of between 49,765 and 212,430 birds (BLI 2013b, p. 
6; Snyder et al. 2000, p. 671; Lambert 1993). The total population has 
been estimated to be between 43,000 and 183,000 mature individuals; 
however, this population estimate is based on 1993 data (Lambert 1993 
in BLI 2013b). A discussion in a BLI forum offers strong evidence that 
it could decline by 50-79 percent over the next 39 years (Taylor in BLI 
2013d, p. 2). Burung Indonesia (a local NGO devoted to protecting wild 
birds and their habitats through working with people for sustainable 
development) estimated that, based on surveys conducted in 2008 and 
2009, between 8,629 and 48,393 white cockatoos remain in the wild 
(Burung Indonesia 2010, pers. comm.) on Halmahera Island.

Biology, Distribution, and Habitat

    While the exact lifespan is unknown, reports of the white 
cockatoo's lifespan vary between 20 and 50 years in captivity (Jordan 
2010, pers. comm.; Lambert 1993, p. 147). Wild-caught birds have been 
reported not to breed until they are 6 years old. The greatest 
productive breeding age for the white cockatoo is between 6 and 20 
years (Jordan 2010, pers. comm.). However, some pairs have been 
recorded to breed well into their thirties, and a few exceptions have 
been reported with pairs or individuals that have reproduced into their 
forties or fifties (Lambert 1993, p. 147). Clutch-size of white 
cockatoos in captivity is reported to be 2 to 3 eggs per season, and 
incubation takes 25 to 28 days; nestlings remain in the nest 
approximately 90 days before fledging (Cameron 2007, p. 140). Both 
parents share responsibility for raising chicks, and the species is 
thought to be monogamous for life.
    The white cockatoo is endemic to a few islands in North Maluku, 
Indonesia, and it inhabits primary, logged, and secondary forests 
possibly up to 900 m (2,953 feet) (Vetter 2009, pp. 25-26). It is not 
thought to inhabit forests on ultra-basic rock (BLI 2001, p. 1674). 
This species is believed to occur in three protected areas: Gunung 
Sibela Strict Nature Reserve on Bacan Island (although this site is 
threatened by agricultural encroachment and gold prospecting), and 
Aketajawe Nature

[[Page 35884]]

Reserve, and the Lalobata Protected Forest (ALNP), both on Halmahera 
Island (Indonesian Parrot Protection for Life 2014, p. 4). 
Historically, its range has been the islands of Halmahera, Bacan, 
Ternate, Tidore, Kasiruta and Mandiole in North Maluku (BLI 2013b, p. 
6; Snyder et al. 2000, p. 67). ALNP consists of approximately 167,300 
hectares (413,407 acres) of primary and secondary forest. This total 
area represents 7.5 percent of Halmahera Island (Burung International 
2010, pers. comm). The white cockatoo is believed to only inhabit 
Halmahera and Bacan Islands (Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) 2010, 
pers. comm.). The Bacan Island group, also known as Palau Batjan, is 
about 16 km (10 mi) southwest of Halmahera Island. Little is known 
about the status of the species other than on Halmahera Island. Due to 
the lack of information, this status review only addresses its status 
on Halmahera Island unless otherwise specified.
    The Maluku Islands are also known as the Moluccas or the Spice 
Islands, and they are between Sulawesi and New Guinea, below the 
Philippines. The white cockatoo, like most cockatoos, is a resident 
(nonmigratory) species, but cockatoos are strong fliers, and they will 
likely travel to nearby islands in search of habitat or food, if it is 
not readily available. The highest densities of this species occur in 
primary (old-growth) forest (Burung International 2011; BLI 2009), but 
the species seems to tolerate some habitat modification. White 
cockatoos inhabit mangroves, plantations (including coconut), and 
agricultural land (BLI 2013d, p. 1). This species requires large trees 
for nesting and roosting, is often observed feeding in large flocks, 
and eats seeds, fruit, and insects. Their preferred nesting holes were 
observed to be situated at points where large branches had broken off 
the main trunk (Lambert 1993, p. 146).
    Halmahera (also known as Jilolo or Gilolo Island) is the largest 
island in the North Maluku province, and is 17,780 km\2\ (6,865 mi\2\) 
in size. Its annual precipitation is 2,000 to 3,000 mm (79 to 118 in). 
Halmahera, a four-pronged island, is considered a biodiversity hotspot 
(Myers et al. 2000 in Setiadi et al. 2010, p. 560). North Maluku 
province consists of eight provincial districts: North Halmahera, West 
Halmahera, East Halmahera, Central Halmahera, South Halmahera, Ternate 
Municipality, Tidore City and Islands, and Sula Islands. In North 
Halmahera, as of 2011, the number of districts on the island had 
increased to 22, and the number of villages has increased from 174 to 
260. The human population in Maluku Province in 2010 was estimated to 
be 1,531,402 (Badan Pusat Statistik Provinsi Maluku 2010). Aketajawe-
Lolobata National Park, established in 2004, was the first national 
park established in North Maluku (Keputusan Menteri Kehutanan No. 
SK.397/MenHut-II/2004), and is described as being one of the most 
pristine and unvisited areas in all of Indonesia.
    Bacan, a smaller island to the southwest of Halmahera, is also 
inhabited by the white cockatoo, although very little is known about 
the status of the species here. This remote, sparsely populated island 
is not well known. It is 1,900 km\2\ (733 mi\2\) in area and still 
contains relatively undisturbed forests. On Bacan, as of 2011, the 
human population estimate is between 13,000 and 59,000 individuals with 
the majority residing on the west side of the island, in the capital 
(Labuha) and nearby villages. The current number of white cockatoos on 
the island is unknown. Reports from locals indicated that the species 
had declined on Bacan due to trapping between the 1970s and 1980s 
(Lambert 1993, p. 146). Surveys conducted here in 1985 found only 76 
white cockatoos. In 1991, the population on Bacan and its satellite 
islands was estimated to be 7,220 to 29,300 white cockatoos (Lambert 
1993), but this may be an overestimate of the population size based on 
the survey methods used (Gilardi 2011, pers. comm.).
    Accuracy of survey methodologies varies (Thomas et al. 2009, pp. 5-
14; Pollack 2006, p. 882; Thomas 1996, pp. 49-58), and there are limits 
to how much confidence we can place in the various population surveys 
(Royle and Nichols 2003). One researcher pointed out that differing 
survey methodologies can result in differences in at least an order of 
magnitude. In situations where species are rare or have small 
populations, the number of observations made per survey may be very 
small and the number of sites limited, and, therefore, estimates and 
projections may not be accurate (Pollack 2006, p. 891; Marsden 1999, 
pp. 377-390).
    In some areas, suitable habitat may be disturbed due to habitat 
modification and infrastructure development. As a result, species' 
breeding, nesting, and forage habitat have subsequently been destroyed, 
and the birds are dispersing out of their previously used habitat in 
search of other suitable areas. It may appear as though the population 
is larger than it actually is, due to sightings in new locations or the 
perception that the species is more common because it has been 
displaced from its original habitat.
    In the case of white cockatoos, the population estimate may not be 
accurate based on the survey methodology used and the inferences made. 
As of 2011, the population density estimation for this species in the 
Aketajawe block was between 1.6 and 8.9 individuals per km\2\ (Burung 
Indonesia 2011, pp. 1-5). From this survey, a projection was made to 
the surrounding area of 5,462 km\2\ (2,109 mi\2\) of the remaining 
natural forest area in the vicinity of the national park. Based on this 
projection, Burung Indonesia (a nongovernmental organization in 
Indonesia that partners with BirdLife International to protect wild 
birds and their habitat) estimated the population in the western 
Halmahera natural forests was 8,630 to 48,393 individuals. This 
estimate may be optimistic based, in part, on the studies described 
above (Pollock 2006, p. 882; Royle and Nichols 2003, p. 777; Marsden 
1999, pp. 377-390). In addition, because the survey extrapolated the 
population density for the surrounding area outside of the Aketajawe 
block (which contains less suitable habitat for the species and is more 
accessible to poachers) from the estimated density within the Aketajawe 
Nature Reserve (which contains the preferred habitat for the species 
and is less accessible to poachers), the density levels outside of the 
Aketajawe Nature Reserve may be an overestimate. Assuming that between 
8,629 and 48,393 individuals were on Halmahera in 2009 and an estimated 
49,765 to 212,430 individuals were there in 1992; this trend in 
population estimates suggests a decrease in the population. As we noted 
earlier in this document, it is difficult to infer a trend from these 
estimates because survey methodologies were different. A decrease in 
the species' population is extremely likely based on the negative 
effects of habitat loss and poaching that are commonly known to occur 
on this island.
    Local anecdotal accounts of this species' population also vary. The 
population of white cockatoos is thought to be ``very sparse'' (WCS 
2010, pers. comm.) and rapidly declining (BLI 2013d, p. 1). Populations 
were conversely described as still being relatively widespread across 
Halmahera Island, and birds were occasionally observed in flocks (WCS 
2010, pers. comm.). In November 2010, this species was observed daily, 
with flocks up to 23 birds observed during a 5-day trip to Halmahera 
(WCS 2010, pers. comm.). However, local people consider them to have 
declined from former population levels.
    As of 2014, we have no current estimate of the population on Bacan

[[Page 35885]]

Island. Although the last estimate, in 1993, was between 7,220 to 
29,300 individuals on Bacan Island, a 1985 survey found only 76 
cockatoos. We are unsure of the population trend. Further, in 1993, 
more than 100 people regularly trapped parrots on Bacan, and this 
practice was a major source of income (Lambert 1993, p. 155). Poaching 
is a common practice in Indonesia, and it likely still occurs with 
regularity on Bacan Island.

Conservation Status for the White Cockatoo

    The white cockatoo has been listed in Appendix II of CITES since 
1981. Appendix II includes species which although not necessarily now 
threatened with extinction may become so unless trade in specimens of 
such species is subject to strict regulation in order to avoid 
utilization incompatible with their survival; and other species which 
must be subject to regulation in order that trade in specimens of 
certain species threatened with extinction which are or may be affected 
by trade may be brought under effective control (CITES Article II(2)). 
International trade in specimens (dead or live) of Appendix II species 
is authorized through permits or certificates. International trade in 
specimens of Appendix II species is authorized when: (1) The CITES 
Scientific Authority of the country of export has determined that the 
export will not be detrimental to the survival of the species in the 
wild; and (2) the CITES Management Authority of the country of export 
has determined that the specimens to be exported were legally acquired 
(UNEP-WCMC 2008a, p. 1).
    This species is listed on the 2010 IUCN Red list as vulnerable; 
however, the IUCN Red list confers no legal protections. It is also 
protected in the United States by the WBCA. The purpose of the WBCA is 
to promote the conservation of exotic birds and to ensure that 
international trade involving the United States does not harm exotic 
birds. Although Indonesia has a national ban against harvest of the 
white cockatoo, the quota is not effective at eliminating poaching in 
the wild. Cockatoos are still poached and smuggled into local markets 
(ProFauna 2010; ProFauna Indonesia 2008, pp. 1-9). The white cockatoo 
is not listed as a protected species by the Indonesian Republic 
Forestry Ministry (WCS 2010, pers. comm.).
    Information available suggests that a few local protections are in 
preliminary stages but occurring. Existence of the Aketajawe-Lolobata 
National Park on Halmahera may serve to reduce hunting pressure and 
habitat loss if game wardens are monitoring the park. Also on 
Halmahera, some of the foreign-owned mining operations are considering 
their environmental impacts (see Factor A discussion on mining). Very 
few private or nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) operate in the 
area, in part due to the lack of funding available. Burung Indonesia 
(http://www.burung.org) does some work in this area, mostly in relation 
to the national park, and there is another local NGO, Konservasi Alam 
Maluku Utara (KAMU), that is working to try to protect this species 
(Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) 2010, pers. comm.). There may be 
carbon-funded forest protection projects starting in the area that also 
may convey protection measures, but we know of none operating yet.

Evaluation of Factors Affecting the White Cockatoo

Factor A. The Present or Threatened Destruction, Modification, or 
Curtailment of the Species' Habitat or Range.
    Researchers commonly accept that deforestation and habitat loss is 
a significant problem in Indonesia (Lee et al. 2013, p. 25; Laurance 
2007, p. 1544). Indonesia consists of 17,508 islands and 33 provinces. 
It is a rapidly developing country, with a population of approximately 
230 million (United Nations 2009, p. 11), and is the world's fourth 
most populous country (United Nations 2009, p. 11). Countries with the 
highest human population growth rates tend to have the highest rates of 
deforestation as well (Laurance 2007, p. 1545). As available land 
becomes scarcer, companies and humans move toward more remote areas in 
search of resources (BLI 2008, p. 100). Human settlements and 
plantations are typically located in lowland coastal areas, which is 
the white cockatoo's preferred habitat (Smiet 1985, pp. 181, 183). The 
habitat required by the white cockatoo has been impacted by activities 
such as conversion of its habitat to uses such as development of towns, 
mining, and logging (particularly illegal logging, which generally 
fails to use sustainable logging practices) (Lambert 1993, p. 146). 
Pressure on the islands' resources is increasing (http://www.indonesia-tourism.com/north-maluku/halmahera_history.html), in part from the 
increase in human population on the island, a demand for more resources 
such as biofuel and agriculture, and to a lesser extent, an increase in 
ecotourism. Historically, 75 percent of the population on Halmahera has 
depended on farming or fishing for their livelihood, but this is 
changing as investors move to the island bringing increased 
development.
    Part of the Indonesian Government's long-term planning strategy is 
to develop more efficient agriculture to help alleviate poverty. For 
example, the Government of Indonesia has sold land to a company called 
the Sustainable Pacific Corporation (SPC), which purchased 300,000 ha 
(750,000 ac) of land to be used for organic agriculture and livestock 
breeding, agricultural packing houses, warehouses, tourism, and a sea 
port (http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/2412420/halmahera_a_world_sustainable_development.html?cat=3 and http://worldteakplantation.itrademarket.com/profile/sustainable-pacific-corp.htm, accessed February 23, 2011). An essential part of this 
process is infrastructure development, primarily the improvement of 
roads, which can lead to further illegal logging and land clearance, 
and also facilitates bird trapping (poaching). This initiative will 
likely convert land that is currently suitable white cockatoo habitat 
into land for other uses that are no longer suitable for this species, 
such as Jatropha curcas plantations, which are discussed below.
Logging
    Illegal logging is considered to be a leading cause of forest 
degradation in Indonesia (Rhee et al. 2004, chap. 6, p. 7). Between 
2000 and 2005, Indonesia's forest cover declined by more than 90,000 
km\2\ (34,740 mi\2\). Unsustainable logging practices that destroy the 
forest canopy also reduce habitat available to the white cockatoo 
(Lusli 2008, p. 22). Logging creates a network of roads, which can lead 
to secondary problems (BLI 2013b, p. 7; Ben[iacute]tez-L[oacute]pez et 
al. 2010, p. 1307; BLI 2008k, p. 6), such as providing access for 
poachers. The Center for International Forestry Research estimated that 
between 55 and 75 percent of logging in Indonesia is illegal (http://www.cifor.cgiar.org, accessed December 10, 2010). Illegal logging is 
pervasive, and the Indonesian Government has been unable to enforce 
protected forest boundaries (Laurance 2007, pp. 1544-1547; Barr 2001, 
p. 40). Illegal logging activities include: Overharvesting beyond legal 
and sustainable quotas, harvesting trees from steep slopes and riparian 
habitat, illegal timber harvest and land encroachment in conservation 
areas and protected forests, and falsification of documents. 
Overexploitation of the forests and illegal logging are driven by the 
wood-

[[Page 35886]]

processing industry, which is reported to consume at least six times 
the officially allowed harvest (Rhee et al. 2004, p. xvii, chap. 6, p. 
8). Illegal logging in national parks is reported with regularity, and 
the people involved have in the past been armed and described as being 
ruthless (Whitten et al. 2001, p. 2).
    Selective logging is the primary legal method used for the 
extraction of timber in Indonesia (BLI 2008k, p. 6). In selective 
logging, the most valuable trees from a forest are commercially 
extracted (Johns 1988, p. 31), and the forest is left to regenerate 
naturally or with some management until being subsequently logged 
again. Johns (1988, p. 31), studying a West Malaysian dipterocarp 
forest (tall hardwood tropical trees of the family Dipterocarpaceae), 
found that mechanized selective logging in tropical rain forests, which 
usually removes a small percentage of timber trees, caused severe 
incidental damage. The extraction of 3 percent of trees destroyed 51 
percent of the forest. He concluded that this type of logging reduced 
the availability of food sources for frugivores (fruit-eaters). Loggers 
occasionally find parrots, including Cacatua alba, in commercially 
valuable trees that they cut down, such as Anisoptera (locally known as 
mersawa) in the Dipterocarpaceae family. The white cockatoo has been 
observed in commercially valuable trees such as Anisoptera and Canarium 
species (kenari or kiharpan) (Lambert 1993, p. 146). As of 2008, the 
BLI assessment stated that much of the habitat for the species was 
still intact, and even where degraded, the species used degraded areas. 
This was confirmed by WCS, which indicated that the islands of 
Halmahera and Bacan still have extensive forest cover; however, because 
selective logging targets mature trees, it can have a disproportionate 
impact on tree cavity nesting species such as cockatoos because fewer 
nest sites remain (BLI 2008k, p. 6).
    Although almost 80 percent of its original forest is still intact, 
the Halmahera Rain Forests ecoregion (including Bacan Island) still 
faces habitat deforestation threats. As the forests are lost on other 
Indonesian islands, there is an increasing potential for forestry 
operations to move to Halmahera and other islands with large, desirable 
trees. Despite Presidential Instruction No. 4/2005 to eradicate illegal 
logging in forest areas and distribution of illegally cut timber 
throughout Indonesia (FAOLEX 2009, p. 1), illegal logging continues 
(refer to Factor D discussion). Contributing factors include poor 
forest management practices, rapid decentralization of government, 
abuse of local political powers, complicity of the military and police 
in some areas of the country, inconsistent law enforcement, and 
dwindling power of the central government (Laurence 2007, p. 1544; 
USAID 2004, pp. 3, 9).
    Although illegal logging still occurs, the Indonesian Government is 
actively working to conserve its resources. The year 2011 was declared 
the International Year of Forests. Many countries, including Indonesia, 
are working toward reducing emissions from deforestation and forest 
degradation (termed REDD) (Ministry of Forestry of the Republic of 
Indonesia 2008, 185 pp.). Despite these efforts, illegal logging still 
occurs within this species' range.
Mining
    Mining and its associated impacts is a fairly new factor affecting 
this species. Several companies have mining rights in the Maluku area, 
particularly on Halmahera (WCS 2010, pers. comm.). PT Antam, the 
largest mining company in Indonesia, currently operates three nickel 
mines on the northeast prong of Halmahera (PT Antam 2009). Another 
mining company, PT Nusa Halmahera Mineral (NHM), is a joint venture 
company between Newcrest Mining of Australia and PT Antam Tbk, an 
Indonesian-owned company. They have an exploration license for Bacan 
and nearby islands to look for gold and other minerals. A third mining 
company has a license to mine nickel near Ake Tajawi on Halmahera (WWF 
2010a).
    Two gold mines have been in operation on Halmahera (Newcrest Mining 
2010, p. 1). The Gosowong mine was an open-pit, cyanide-leach mine that 
operated from 1999 to 2002, but has closed. The Toguraci mine began 
operation in 2004. Toguraci is located 2 km (1.2 mi) southwest of the 
original Gosowong pit mine. This mining operation is operated by a 
joint venture company, Pt Nusa Halmahera Minerals (PTNHM) and PT Aneka 
Tambang. Development of this mine began in July 2003, after approval of 
a feasibility study and environmental impact statement by the 
Indonesian Minister of Mines. Actual mining of ore and the first gold 
production began in February 2004. This mine has been the subject of 
conflict between local residents and the mining company. Between 
October and December 2003, several illegal miners occupied the Toguraci 
mine site. Additionally, the mine is located in a forested area that, 
according to local residents, is protected under Indonesian law, and, 
therefore, mining operations should not be allowed. The current 
operating status of the Toguraci mine is unclear; however, local NGOs 
indicate that mining on Halmahera does affect the white cockatoo (WCS 
2010, pers. comm.; Vetter 2009, pp. 2, 14, 15). Mining activities can 
affect the white cockatoo's habitat either directly or indirectly, 
through pressures such as illegal poaching or human encroachment and 
habitat disturbance.
    Yet another mining company, PT Weda Bay Nickel, proposed a nickel 
and cobalt mining project in 2009 on the island and submitted an 
environmental monitoring plan (Cardiff 2010, pp. 1-14; PT Weda Bay 
Nickel 2009, 204 pp.). The footprint of the mining operation appears to 
be within the boundaries of Aketajawe-Lolobata National Park (Cardiff 
2010, p. 1; Vetter 2009, p. 19), which could have significant 
detrimental effects on Halmahera's wildlife, including the white 
cockatoo. A review of the proposed mining project indicated that it 
would likely destroy between 4,000 and 11,000 hectares (9,884 and 
27,182 acres) of tropical forest, and between 2,000 and 6,000 ha (4,942 
and 14,826 ac) of protected forested area (Cardiff 2010, pp. 6, 9, 12). 
The review indicated that mining activities are extremely destructive 
to this habitat. Based on deforestation projections, the population of 
the white cockatoo is projected to decline more than 65 percent over 
three generations due to deforestation (Vetter 2009, pp. 25, 26, 51). 
However, although it is clear that the extractable resources on 
Halmahera are desirable, as of 2013, the project was not funded by the 
World Bank.
Biofuel Production
    Indonesia is investing in the planting of Jatropha curcas trees and 
palm oil (Elaeis guineesis) (Department for Environment, Food and Rural 
Affairs, United Kingdom 2008, pp. xvii, 47, 64, 65). Rapid expansion of 
biofuel plantations has led to intense international concern about 
wide-scale environmental impacts. On Halmahera, at least 500 hectares 
(3,750 acres) have been allotted for cultivating the Jatropha tree 
(Consulate General of the Republic of Indonesia 2006, pp. 5-6). Many 
industries, such as the air transportation industry, are considering 
the use of fuel from Jatropha as a biofuel source, and it is also being 
encouraged as a mechanism for carbon credits (http://www.jatrophabiodiesel.org, http://www.jatrophaworld.org, http://www.jatropha-alliance.org, accessed May 20, 2014). This oil has been 
reported to produce energy similar to diesel fuel. Although this 
species may

[[Page 35887]]

yield 4 times as much fuel per hectare as soybeans, and possibly 10 
times that of corn, it requires 5 times more water to produce than 
corn. It is also reported to be desirable to developing countries 
because its carbon emissions footprint is thought to be relatively 
small when burned.
    Conversion of land to monocultures destroys white cockatoo habitat. 
Monocultures are generally not suitable habitat for wildlife. White 
cockatoos require large trees, which provide large enough nesting 
cavity sites. Jatropha curcas is not cultivated as a tree, instead it 
is cultivated as a large shrub (Gilardi 2011, pers. comm.). As such it 
will never produce cavities large enough to be suitable for any 
cockatoo nest. Land conversion will also likely have a negative impact 
on this species' suitable habitat due to road building, infrastructure 
development, and other construction (Vetter 2009, pp. 1-10). Because 
there is currently no effective enforcement body to monitor sustainable 
land development (also refer to Factor D discussion) on Halmahera, 
these activities threaten white cockatoo habitat. Therefore, we find 
that conversion of forests to monocultures for biofuel, particularly 
Jatropha, is a threat to the white cockatoo.
Summary of Factor A
    Deforestation affects endemic bird species restricted to single 
islands more severely than it affects other species (Brooks et al. 
1997, p. 392). Monocultures such as exotic tree plantations and 
agriculture, as well as resource extraction and logging, are forms of 
deforestation and habitat loss affecting endemic island species such as 
the white cockatoo in Indonesia (Laurance 2007, p. 1544). Lowland areas 
that offer vital habitat for Indonesia's cockatoos have been the most 
severely impacted (Vetter 2009, p. 4; Cameron 2007, p. 177). As islands 
become more inhabited and deforested, humans move to other islands that 
contain available resources (Laurance 2007, p. 1544).
    Cockatoos are highly impacted by selective logging of primary 
forests. Selective logging, which primarily targets mature trees, has a 
negative impact on cavity-nesters such as the white cockatoo. Vetter 
2009 used remote sensing techniques to track the rate and spatial 
pattern of forest loss in the North Maluku Endemic Bird Area between 
1990 and 2003, and projected rates of deforestation over the next three 
generations for restricted range bird species found in this region (BLI 
2013d, pp. 1-2; Vetter 2009). This study estimated the rate of forest 
loss within the geographic and elevation range of white cockatoo to be 
approximately 20 percent between 1990 and 2003, and projected the loss 
of approximately 65 percent of forest in its range over the next three 
generations.
    Research found that the abundance of cockatoos is positively 
related to the density of its favored nesting trees (large trees that 
would be impacted by logging), especially since reduced-impact logging 
techniques are rarely applied. Once the primary forest is logged, 
experience on other nearby Indonesian islands shows that the secondary 
forest is generally converted to other uses or logged again rather than 
being allowed to return to primary forest. Although cockatoos may 
continue to inhabit secondary forests, the population will be at a 
substantially lower number. There is generally a delay between 
deforestation and bird extinctions (Brooks et al. 1999, p. 1,140). 
During this conversion process, the deforested area is in a state of 
flux; some bird species are no longer able to exist due to the lack of 
adequate resources needed for survival (nesting, feeding, and 
breeding). The high loss of primary forests and degradation of 
secondary forests is a concern, in part because little is known about 
the reproductive ecology of white cockatoos in the wild, including 
breeding success in mature forests versus secondary forests, and 
whether this species of cockatoo will survive in degraded forests in 
the long term.
    In summary, habitat modification and deforestation activities, such 
as conversion of primary or secondary forests to exotic tree 
plantations for biofuel production and agriculture, combined with 
selective logging and resource extraction (mining), are likely to 
destroy much of the white cockatoo's habitat (the lowland rain forests 
of Halmahera) in the near future. While this species may be tolerant of 
secondary-growth forests or other disturbed sites, these areas do not 
represent optimal conditions for the species. Based on these factors, 
we find that the present and threatened destruction, modification, or 
curtailment of its habitat is a threat to the continued existence of 
the white cockatoo throughout all of its range.
Factor B. Overutilization for Commercial, Recreational, Scientific, or 
Educational Purposes
    The primary threat to white cockatoos is poaching from the wild to 
meet the demand for the pet trade (BLI 2013b, p. 7; ProFauna 2008; 
Jepson and Ladle 2005, p. 442). Illegal collection for the pet trade is 
a major problem for wild birds in Indonesia and is the primary threat 
to this species (ProFauna Indonesia 2010, pers. comm.; ProFauna 2008, 
pp. 1-9; BLI 2003, pp. 1-2). Bird-keeping is a popular pastime in 
Indonesia, with deep cultural roots (Jepson and Ladle 2005, p. 442). 
Parrots have been traded for hundreds of years by people living in the 
Moluccas. One report indicated that 17 percent of the global white 
cockatoo population was captured for trade in 1991 alone (Lambert 1993, 
p. 160). As of 1999, there appeared to be no enforcement of the 
country's national harvest ban; cockatoos were widely available in 
local markets.
    In 2002, an investigation found 500 white cockatoos were caught to 
supply the pet trade (ProFauna Indonesia 2010, pers. comm.). Parrots 
are an important part of the Indonesian culture, which creates 
significant demand for parrots domestically (BLI 2008k, p. 10). In a 
survey of bird-keeping among households in five major Indonesian 
cities, Jepson and Ladle (2005, pp. 442-448) found that as many as 2.5 
million birds are kept as pets in the five cities. Of these, 60,230 
wild-caught, native parrots were kept by 51,000 households, and 50,590 
wild-caught, native parrots were acquired each year (they changed 
hands, not an indication of birds taken from the wild each year). The 
study recommended a conservation intervention based on the level of 
bird-keeping among urban Indonesians. As of 2006, an average of 100 
white cockatoos was found for sale in bird markets in Java annually 
(ProFauna Indonesia 2010, pers. comm.).
    The commercial market for pet cockatoos is highly lucrative 
(Cant[uacute]-Guzm[aacute]n et al. 2007, 121 pp.). Parrots can sell for 
75,000 to 500,000 Indonesian Rupiahs (IDR or Rp) each, which equates to 
between $7.50 and $50 U.S. dollars. A young cockatoo can sell for $20 
to $25 USD (ProFauna Indonesia 2010, pers. comm.; Sasaoka 2009, pers. 
comm., pp. 1-2; ProFauna 2008, p. 3). Because parrots have a high value 
relative to locals' income, the sale of live parrots can be a 
significant source of revenue.
    Even with government controls, poaching of cockatoos (i.e., hunting 
by people to gain at least a temporary living from the activity) is 
relatively common. A demand for this species as pets still exists, and 
wild-origin birds are less expensive to obtain than captive-bred birds 
(Reynolds 2010, pers. comm.; Horsfield 2010, pers. comm.). Field 
research conducted in 2003 through 2005 in a small village (320 people, 
60 households) located in the Manusela Valley, Seram, led to the 
conclusion that collecting wild parrots,

[[Page 35888]]

including cockatoos, is a way for villagers to supplement their income 
during times of economic hardship (Sasaoka 2009, pers. comm., p. 1; 
Sasaoka 2008, p. 158). In 2003, 21 cockatoos were trapped in the 
research site by 3 households; in 2004, 25 cockatoos, by 5 households; 
and in 2005, 26 cockatoos, by 10 households. These researchers found 
that villagers sometimes kept the cockatoos for several months while 
waiting for the best price, but normally did not keep them as pets.
    Exploitation for commercial purposes prior to 1992 is widely 
accepted as the primary cause of drastic, rangewide population decline 
of many parrot species. Prior to 1992, when the WBCA was enacted, 
critical scientific studies to address issues of detriment to 
populations, appropriate management of species and sustainable levels 
of trade had not been undertaken for most CITES Appendix-II bird 
species in trade. Even in 1992, there was serious concern that the 
international commercial trade in wild-caught birds was contributing to 
the decline in the wild of some species of birds listed in CITES 
Appendix II. However, the implementation of WBCA in addition to CITES 
has curtailed much of the trade into the United States.
    Within Indonesia, however, poaching continues to pose a serious 
threat to the species. The scope of the illegal trade in white 
cockatoos is unknown. ProFauna's investigation in 2008 found that this 
species is regularly poached from the wild and shipped to the 
Philippines. After reaching the Philippines, what occurs to the birds 
is unclear. Based on ProFauna's investigation, many of the birds being 
poached from the wild may be ``laundered and described as being of 
captive-origin.'' In general, it is difficult, if not impossible, to 
determine the source of cockatoos (BLI 2003, p. 1).
    ProFauna found that around 9,800 parrots, including white 
cockatoos, are poached every year (ProFauna 2008, p. 3). An 
investigation completed in 2008 found that the white cockatoo is 
poached from Maluku and smuggled into the Philippines (ProFauna 
Indonesia 2010, pers. comm.; ProFauna 2008). Parrot poaching was found 
to take place most frequently in the central part of Halmahera, as well 
as Bacan, Obi, and Mandioli (ProFauna 2008, p. 7). The investigation 
indicated that approximately 10 percent of the 4,000 parrots smuggled 
annually were white cockatoos. In their investigation, they found bird 
poachers in Togawa, for example, were able to catch 15 individuals of 
white cockatoo in a week (ProFauna 2008, p. 3).
    During the illegal trade process, many birds die prior to being 
exported (Cameron 2007, p. 163; Cant[uacute]-Guzm[aacute]n et al. 2007, 
p. 60; Lambert 1993, p. 157). Methods used for poaching lead to 
significant mortality. In some cases, white cockatoos in the past have 
been caught with gum or glue, which would stick to their feathers and 
cause fatal injuries (ProFauna 2008, p. 2; Lambert 1993, p. 155). Some 
trappers reported mortality rates between 77 and 80 percent before 
parrots reach customers, and nestlings experience a higher mortality 
rate (Cant[uacute]-Guzm[aacute]n et al. 2007, p. 60). ProFauna 
Indonesia estimated that parrot smuggling in North Maluku, Indonesia, 
results in approximately 40 percent mortality (5 percent during glue 
trapping, 10 percent during transportation, and 25 percent during 
holding to sell in bird markets (due to malnutrition, disease, and 
stress) (2008, p. 5)). The estimates do not always include deaths of 
birds before export, smuggled birds, and birds domestically traded. 
Others estimate that as few as one-fourth of those poached survive the 
process of removal from their native, wild habitat to captivity.
    A 2007 investigative report of the illegal parrot trade in Mexico 
revealed the magnitude of illegal trade of parrot species 
(Cant[uacute]-Guzm[aacute]n et al. 2007, 121 pp.). The investigation 
found that documents are frequently forged to smuggle desirable and 
increasingly rare parrot species (p. 38). The organization that seizes 
parrots in Mexico, the Federal Attorney for the Protection of the 
Environment (PROFEPA), indicated that their most serious problem is 
combating the illegal bird trade (p. 45). Although this investigation 
was done in Mexico, it reflects a problem in many countries where 
parrots occur.
    The extent of undocumented illegal trade (international and 
domestic) is difficult to quantify (Pain et al. 2006, p. 322; Thomsen 
et al. 1992, p. 3). Cases of seizures reported to the CITES Secretariat 
since 1990 are small--1 live bird seized in Austria in 1997; 25 live 
birds seized in the United Arab Emirates in 1998; and 4 live birds 
seized in Indonesia in 1999 (Sellar 2009, pers. comm., p. 2). Between 
2000 and 2010, the United States refused import clearance for three 
birds reported as Cacatua species. One bird was described as C. alba in 
2010; the other two birds were unknown Cacatua species. All three birds 
were reexported.
    Additionally, discrepancies in the UNEP-WCMC Trade Database are 
common, so it is difficult to understand the full extent that this 
species is in trade. Between 1993 and 2002, although Indonesia had 
reported the export of 712 wild-caught birds, import records from other 
CITES countries recorded 1,646 (UNEP-WCMC 2010; Cahill et al. 2006, p. 
162). The Service found a report in 2009 that included an export to the 
United Arab Emirates (UAE) from South Africa for which South Africa 
reported 614 captive-bred live birds exported and the UAE reported 965 
captive-bred birds imported. Despite these discrepancies, the best 
available information suggests that this species is a desirable pet, 
and its removal from the wild is still occurring.
    Locally, a high level of parrot poaching in north Halmahera is due 
in part to the lack of supervision by Natural Resources Conservation 
(KSDA) officers in the Forestry Department (ProFauna 2008, p. 3). The 
KSDA officers do not conduct regular enforcement or patrol. An NGO 
working with this species indicated that they had received several 
white cockatoos from Indonesian authorities who had confiscated them 
from poachers (Metz 2010, pers. comm.). Most of the Indonesian parrots 
come from Halmahera Island and are shipped to the Philippines. A 2008 
investigation found that 40 percent of parrots were smuggled to the 
Philippines from the port in Pelita Village, Galela District in 
northern Halmahera (ProFauna 2008, p. 5). The birds are apparently 
smuggled to Balut Island or to General Santos in the Philippines. The 
journey to smuggle parrots from Halmahera, Indonesia, to General 
Santos, the Philippines, takes more than 9 hours, not including the 
time it takes to transport birds from the forest, to villages, and then 
to the port. The transactions are done offshore or in the sea, where 
the Philippine dealers collect the parrots from Indonesian ships. Upon 
arrival at General Santos, the birds are sent to Cartimar market in 
Manila, the capital of the Philippines (ProFauna 2008, p. 4). Since 
there is little disincentive for locals, it is a low-risk and lucrative 
source of income. Law No. 5, 1990, governing the conservation of 
biological resources and their ecosystems, was enacted to protect 
natural resources and the ecosystems (Yeager 2008, pp. 3-4); however, 
poaching and illegal trade continue to occur (also see discussion under 
Factor D). Despite the existence of legislation, this illegal trade of 
protected parrots continues.
    The presence of mining projects in Halmahera is also likely to 
increase demand locally for birds (see Factor A discussion above). 
Temporary workers are known to buy these birds as gifts, and even 
police and military personnel posted to the area have contributed to

[[Page 35889]]

this problem (WCS 2010, pers. comm.). ProFauna has encouraged the Navy 
of Indonesian Armed Force (TNI) and the Indonesian Marine Police to 
improve the patrol of marine boundaries between Indonesia and the 
Philippines in order to decrease this illegal trade. The governments of 
both Indonesia and the Philippines are working to enforce their 
wildlife laws (ProFauna 2008, pp. 8-9); however, poaching continues.
    Stopping illegal trade is further complicated by the vast size of 
Indonesia's coastline, and government officials have limited resources 
and knowledge to deal with the illegal pet trade (Laurence 2007, p. 
1544). To combat illegal wildlife trade, Southeast Asian countries, 
including Indonesia, formed the Association of South East Asian 
Nations-Wildlife Enforcement Network (ASEAN-WEN) in 2005 to protect the 
region's biodiversity (http://www.asean.org, accessed March 3, 2011). 
ASEAN-WEN uses a cooperative approach to law enforcement (Cameron 2007, 
p. 164). It focuses on the gathering and sharing of intelligence, 
capacity building, and better cooperation in anti-smuggling and Customs 
controls across Southeast Asia (Lin 2005, p. 192). For example in 2008, 
Indonesian police officers and forestry and Customs officers 
participated in an intensive Wildlife Crime Investigation Course 
presented by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to help the government 
tackle poaching and smuggling (Wildlife Alliance 2008, p. 2). Despite 
these efforts, illegal trade of white cockatoo still occurs within 
Indonesia.
Summary of Factor B
    In summary, overutilization (poaching of the white cockatoo for the 
pet trade) is a significant threat to the species contributing to the 
species' population decline. Poaching and illegal trade is difficult to 
control, in part because Indonesia has a vast coastline, and because 
income derived from poaching can be a significant source of income for 
local people. Birds are clearly being poached and shipped to the 
Philippines, and there is strong demand for this species within 
Indonesia. Additionally, having a parrot as a household pet is a common 
part of Indonesian culture. Government officials have limited resources 
to deal with the illegal pet trade. Indonesia is a founding member of 
ASEAN-WEN and has made an effort to train its police, forestry, and 
Customs officers in methods to tackle poaching and smuggling. However, 
the wildlife protection laws are not vigorously enforced at local 
levels for this species.
    Although ProFauna Indonesia and the Indonesian Institute of 
Sciences have requested that the Forestry Department of Indonesia list 
the white cockatoo as a protected species, and the Sultan of Ternate 
Palace has forbidden the poaching of this species (ProFauna Indonesia 
2010, pers. comm.), poaching and illegal cross-border trade still 
occur. The ProFauna investigation in 2008 found that enforcement in 
both Indonesia and the Philippines is lacking. In part because this 
species does not begin to reproduce until approximately 6 years of age, 
and because this species is thought to be monogamous and usually mates 
for life, this level of poaching for the pet trade is a considerable 
threat to the species in its ability to maintain its population. Based 
on the best available information, we find that overutilization is a 
threat to the continued existence of this species.
Factor C. Disease or Predation
    We are unaware of any reports of diseases negatively affecting 
white cockatoos in the wild. Since disease and predation associated 
with this species in the wild are not well documented, we extrapolate 
from what is known about cockatoos in general (see analysis under 
Factor C for the Philippine cockatoo). Although some serious diseases 
such as beak and feather disease and PDD occur in cockatoos in the 
wild, we found no information that these diseases occur in cockatoos in 
the wild in Indonesia. Cases of avian influenza (H5N1) do occur in 
Indonesia, but parrots, particularly cockatoos, are not considered to 
be natural reservoirs of this disease (Indonesian Parrot Project 2006, 
pp. 1-2). With respect to predation, the white cockatoo has natural 
predators, but we were unable to find information that these natural 
predators are having a negative impact on the productivity of this 
species. Therefore, we find that the white cockatoo is not threatened 
due to disease or predation.
Factor D. The Inadequacy of Existing Regulatory Mechanisms
Domestic Regulatory Mechanisms
    Indonesia has laws and regulations in place to conserve its 
biodiversity, manage its forests, regulate trade, provide species 
protection, and develop and manage protected areas. However, these laws 
and regulations are frequently ignored (BLI 2008k, p. 7; Laurance 2007, 
p. 1,544), and the country is unable to adequately monitor its vast 
area, which consists of 17,508 islands. The Indonesian economic crisis 
that led to the downfall of the Suharto regime resulted in the 
government instituting a decentralization policy that gave local 
governments greater autonomy (Vetter 2009, p. 15). However, this 
decentralization resulted in confusion of roles and responsibilities, 
and implementation of decentralization has been slow and uncertain. 
Conflicting interpretation of policies and priorities and the lack of 
capacity or experience of local governments have occurred (Rhee et al. 
2004, chap. 2, p. 20).
    According to ProFauna, the high level of parrot poaching in north 
Halmahera is in part due to the lack of monitoring by Natural Resources 
Conservation (KSDA) officers in the Forestry Department (ProFauna 2008, 
p. 3). There is no regular enforcement or patrol by the KSDA officers 
(ProFauna 2008, p. 3). The North Maluku Government and ProFauna 
Indonesia have proposed to the Forestry Ministry that the species be 
classified as a protected species (BLI 2013b, p. 7; ProFauna 2010, 
pers. comm.).
    In Indonesia, the export of wild-caught parrots is generally 
subject to harvest and export quotas. However, because the white 
cockatoo is not on the Indonesian Government's list of protected 
species (ProFauna 2010a, pers. comm.; Rhee et al. 2004, chap. 5, p. 2, 
App. VIII; Law No. 5 1990, pp. 1-44), Indonesia has no legal export 
quota for wild-caught specimens of this species (IPP 2010). In 1988, 
the Indonesian Government began issuing quotas on trapping for the 
white cockatoo; however, these trapping quotas were poorly enforced. In 
1999, no quota was issued, and all capture was reported to be illegal 
after 1999 (BLI 2013b, p. 7). However, an NGO reported that there was a 
catch quota of the white cockatoo for 2007. It was issued by the 
General Director of Perlindungan Hutan dan Konservasi Alam (PHKA; 
Forest Protection and Nature Conservation under the Indonesian Ministry 
of Forestry), and the catch quota was for 10 pairs that were to be used 
only for breeding (ProFauna 2008, p. 3). However, that quota was 
exceeded (ProFauna 2010, pers. comm.). As of 2010, information 
indicated that there was no longer a catch quota (ProFauna 2010, pers. 
comm.), but that restrictions may apply to commercial purposes, rather 
than breeding. According to WCS (2010, pers. comm.), this species is 
trapped and sold, and this can include trapping on a ``commercial'' 
scale by professionals, or farmers trapping occasional birds and then 
selling them to wholesalers. In 2007, at least 200 white cockatoos were 
caught from the wild in North Halmahera, which far

[[Page 35890]]

exceeded the quota of 10 pairs (ProFauna 2008, p. 3).
    Additionally, in 2010, the Sultan of Ternate Palace issued a fatwa 
(order) forbidding the poaching of cockatoos in the wild. However, as 
stated before, enforcement often is severely lacking (Shepherd et al. 
2004, p. 4) or difficult, and therefore, illegal activities remain 
socially acceptable at the local level. Illegal trade has been reported 
to the Natural Resource Conservation Agency, which is responsible for 
enforcing the law, but to date enforcement efforts remain ineffective 
(ProFauna Indonesia 2004, p. 8). To further complicate enforcement 
efforts, some bird dealers claim that members of the Department of 
Forest Protection and Nature Conservation are involved in the illegal 
trade of this species (Shepherd et al. 2004, p. 4).
    Existing regulatory mechanisms within Indonesia, as implemented, 
are inadequate to reduce or remove the current threats to the white 
cockatoo. Even with government controls, poaching of cockatoos is 
relatively common (WCS 2010, pers. comm.). As discussed under Factor B, 
we found that poaching is a significant factor affecting the white 
cockatoo. There is some evidence that the actions of the Indonesian 
government agencies and the military are changing; however, if 
penalties are not enforced for illegal trade, trapping from the wild 
will continue (ProFauna Indonesia 2004, pp. 9-11). In conclusion, we 
find that the existing regulatory mechanisms are inadequate to reduce 
or remove the current threats to the white cockatoo. No information is 
available to suggest that these regulatory mechanisms will improve in 
the foreseeable future.
CITES
    Indonesia has been a member of CITES since December 28, 1978. It 
has designated Management, Scientific, and Enforcement authorities to 
implement the Treaty (CITES 2013) and has played an active role in 
CITES meetings. Because this species is not listed in Appendix I, which 
would mean that commercial trade would be prohibited except under 
certain circumstances, legal international trade is still occurring for 
this species.
    Between 2000 and 2009, there was generally a downward trend in 
international trade in the white cockatoo (UNEP-WCMC CITES Trade 
Database, accessed January 4, 2011). According to the CITES UNEP-WCMC 
Trade Database, 1,321 live white cockatoos were exported in 2000, 741 
in 2008, and 1,574 in 2009. Between 2000 and 2009, trade in 12,321 live 
white cockatoos was reported. The majority of these birds were exported 
from South Africa and were reported as captive origin. Between 2000 and 
2009, only 28 live white cockatoos were reported as wild origin. None 
of these live specimens reported as wild origin was exported directly 
from Indonesia. Of the shipments of live birds, 8,435 were described as 
captive origin, 19 were described as ``unknown'' origin, and 20 were 
described as pre-Convention, seized, or confiscated. Of the countries 
that reported the most exports of live white cockatoos, 371 specimens 
were reported as exported from Indonesia, 5,009 specimens were reported 
as exported from South Africa, and 1,044 specimens were reported as 
exported from the Philippines. Since discrepancies often arise between 
the numbers of animals reported by both exporting and importing 
countries, these values are derived using the reported trade from both 
the exporting countries and the importing countries. Note that 
countries that are not Parties to CITES do not submit annual report 
trade data to UNEP-WCMC. However, Parties, in their annual reports, do 
include data on their trade with non-parties, and these data are 
recorded in the UNEP-WCMC Trade Database. Also, while the Database does 
not include CITES annual report trade data from CITES Parties that did 
not submit annual reports, it does include CITES trade data from 
Parties that submitted their annual reports and engaged in CITES trade 
with those non-submitting Parties.
    Between 2010 and 2012 (complete trade data was not available for 
2013), the trade database indicates that this species is commonly in 
trade (http://trade.cites.org, accessed May 19, 2014). However, very 
few were reported as being exported from Indonesia, and none of those 
from Indonesia were reported as wild origin. In 2010, none were 
reported as being exported from Indonesia; in 2011, 30 were reported as 
being exported from Indonesia, and in 2012, the trade database 
indicated 20 captive-origin white cockatoos from Indonesia.
    The purpose of CITES is to ensure that international trade in 
animal and plant species is not detrimental to the survival of wild 
populations by regulating the import, export, and reexport of CITES-
listed animal and plant species. The best available data indicate that 
the current threat to this species of cockatoo stems from illegal trade 
in the domestic markets of Indonesia and international surrounding 
countries. As discussed under Factor B above, uncontrolled illegal 
poaching for the pet trade continues to adversely impact white 
cockatoos. Despite illegal trade, CITES is adequately regulating legal 
international trade.
Summary of Factor D
    In summary, we find that the existing regulatory mechanisms within 
Indonesia, as implemented, are inadequate to reduce or remove the 
current threats to white cockatoos. Local protections in place provide 
some protection to white cockatoos. While Indonesia has a good legal 
framework to manage wildlife and their habitats, implementation of its 
laws and regulatory mechanisms is inadequate to reduce the threats to 
white cockatoos. The national parks on Halmahera may provide some 
protection to white cockatoos; however, management of protected areas 
is hindered by staff shortages and lack of expertise and money. As 
discussed under Factors A and B above, we found that habitat 
destruction and poaching are threats to white cockatoos. Deforestation 
and illegal activities are still rampant in Indonesia (Sau 2013, pp. 1-
2; Gaveau et al. 2009, p. 2165; Laurance 2007, pp. 1-7). The national 
and local regulations and management of this species' habitat are 
ineffective at reducing the threats of habitat destruction (see Factor 
A) and poaching for the pet trade (see Factor B). The white cockatoo is 
listed in Appendix II of CITES (see discussion under Conservation 
Status for the White Cockatoo above), and CITES appears to be an 
adequate regulatory mechanism to address legal international trade.
    Even with government restrictions, poaching of cockatoos (i.e., 
hunting by people to gain at least a temporary living from the 
activity) is still relatively common in Indonesia. Nestlings are more 
desirable as pets, yet their mortality rate when taken from the wild is 
greater than that of adults (ProFauna 2008). Laws and regulations are 
frequently ignored, and this adds to the inability to enforce them due 
to the remoteness of the areas where this species is located. No 
information is available to suggest regulatory mechanisms within 
Indonesia will be adequate to protect this species in the foreseeable 
future; therefore, we find that the inadequacy of regulatory mechanisms 
is a threat to the white cockatoo throughout its range.
Factor E. Other Natural or Manmade Factors Affecting the Continued 
Existence of the Species
Ecotourism
    The Halmahera region is an emerging diving destination (WWF 2010a, 
p. 2).

[[Page 35891]]

An Internet search found several Web sites offered diving trips that 
are in the Halmahera region; there is a video available online (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PEmEB-Zj_L4, accessed May 22, 2014), entitled 
``Diving travel: The North Halmahera Experience.'' Although the 
Halmahera region is remote and few diving operations exist, there is 
the potential for the diving industry to expand and exert more of an 
effect on the islands in this area. However, at this time, the best 
available information does not indicate that diving-related activities 
on or near Halmahera negatively affect the white cockatoo. We are not 
aware of any tourist activities occurring on Bacan Island. We found no 
other natural or manmade factors affecting the continued existence of 
the white cockatoo. Therefore, we find there are no threats to this 
species under this factor.
Finding for the White Cockatoo
    As required by the ESA, we considered the five factors in assessing 
whether the white cockatoo is endangered or threatened throughout all 
or a significant portion of its range. We analyzed the potential 
threats to the white cockatoo including: Habitat loss and degradation, 
poaching for the pet trade, disease and predation, the inadequacy of 
regulatory controls, and other natural or manmade factors, such as the 
conversion of habitat to monocultures for biofuel, and ecotourism 
activities such as diving. We found that habitat loss, particularly due 
to selective logging, and conversion of forests to agriculture, mining, 
or biofuels, is a threat to the white cockatoo; the population is 
declining rangewide (Factor A). Halmahera is becoming increasingly more 
desirable to developers and investors as natural resources become 
scarcer.
    We found that poaching for the pet trade is the most significant 
threat to the species, despite local public awareness campaigns. 
Researchers estimate that between 8,629 and 48,393 individuals of this 
species remain in the wild on Halmahera; the number of white cockatoos 
remaining on Bacan Island is unknown, though poaching of wild birds on 
this island is believed to be occurring. Pet birds are an important 
part of not only Indonesian culture, but also Asian culture, with large 
numbers of wild-caught parrots traded domestically and internationally 
(ProFauna 2008, pp. 3-4; BLI 2004, pp. 1-2; Baula et al. 2003, pp. 1-
12). Trappers reportedly remain quite active. Wild-caught birds are 
openly sold in Asian markets, particularly in the nearby Philippines 
(ProFauna 2008, pp. 3-4; BLI 2003, pp. 1-2). An investigation conducted 
by NGOs in Indonesia in 2002 and 2003 found evidence of wild birds in 
local markets, and sellers reported that they were destined to go to 
countries such as Europe (BLI 2004, pp. 1-2). The attempt to end 
illegal trade is hampered by Indonesia's large coastline and officials 
with limited resources and knowledge.
    Unsustainable poaching is particularly detrimental to the white 
cockatoo because of its estimated small and rapidly declining 
population. Excessive removal of individuals from the wild for illegal 
trade is particularly harmful to species such as the white cockatoo, 
which are a monogamous, long-lived species that do not begin breeding 
until they are 6 years of age. Additionally, because this species has a 
high monetary value (Basile in litt. 2010, pp. 6-7) and little risk is 
associated with poaching, poaching is financially lucrative. The Act 
describes a ``threatened species'' as ``any species which is likely to 
become an endangered species within the foreseeable future throughout 
all or a significant portion of its range.'' The best available 
information indicates that poaching and trade are not at a level to 
consider the species to be in danger of extinction at this time. 
However, based on the analysis of the five factors discussed above, we 
determine that the white cockatoo is likely to become an endangered 
species within the foreseeable future. Therefore, we find 
overutilization for commercial, recreational, scientific, or 
educational purposes (Factor B), specifically poaching for the pet 
trade, is a threat to the white cockatoo throughout its range.
    We found no evidence that disease or predation (Factor C) 
significantly affects the wild white cockatoo population throughout its 
range.
    The white cockatoo is not currently classified as a protected 
species by the Indonesian Government. Although Indonesia has a good 
legal framework to manage wildlife and their habitats, implementation 
of its laws and regulatory mechanisms has been inadequate to address 
the threats to the white cockatoo, in part due to the remoteness of the 
white cockatoo's habitat. Logging laws and policies are frequently 
ignored and rarely enforced, and illegal logging is rampant, even 
occurring in national parks and nature reserves. Current concession 
policies and logging practices hamper sustainable forestry. Threats to 
the species have not decreased; local NGOs indicate the population 
trend is declining. Despite numerous laws and regulatory mechanisms to 
administer and manage wildlife and their habitats, existing laws are 
inadequate (factor D) to protect the species and its habitat from these 
other factors.
    Although diving activities are increasing near islands containing 
white cockatoo habitat, we have no evidence that ecotourism is a threat 
to this species now or in the foreseeable future. Therefore, we 
conclude that there are no other natural or manmade factors that are 
threats to the species throughout its range (Factor E).
    Under the ESA, an ``endangered species'' is defined as ``any 
species which is in danger of extinction throughout all or a 
significant portion of its range.'' The ESA defines a ``threatened 
species'' as ``any species which is likely to become an endangered 
species within the foreseeable future throughout all or a significant 
portion of its range.'' Based on our review of the best available 
scientific and commercial information pertaining to the above five 
factors, we find that the white cockatoo meets the definition of a 
``threatened species'' under the ESA, and we are finalizing our rule to 
list the white cockatoo as a threatened species throughout its range. 
Our rationale for proposing to list this species as threatened rather 
than endangered is due to its current distribution within its range and 
its dispersed distribution on two islands, which provides resiliency to 
the population against threats such that the species is not currently 
in danger of extinction. However, white cockatoo is likely to become in 
danger of extinction in the foreseeable future throughout its range.
    BLI indicates that this species is undergoing a rapid population 
decline of 30-49 percent over the past three generations (estimated to 
be approximately 39 years based on an estimated generation length of 
approximately 13 years), principally due to unsustainable levels of 
exploitation. This rapid population decline is likely to continue into 
the foreseeable future unless revised trapping quotas are effectively 
enforced (BLI 2013d, pp. 1-2). As stated previously, existing 
regulatory mechanisms in Indonesia are inadequate to reduce or remove 
the current threats to the white cockatoo and no information is 
available to suggest that these regulatory mechanisms will improve in 
the foreseeable future. BLI also offers strong evidence that the white 
cockatoo population could decline by 50-79 percent over the next 39 
years (BLI 2013d, p. 2). Based on deforestation

[[Page 35892]]

projections, the population of the white cockatoo is projected to 
decline more than 65 percent over three generations due to 
deforestation (Vetter 2009, BLI 2013d). Although the best available 
information indicates that the species is not currently in danger of 
extinction and, thus, does not qualify as an ``endangered species'' 
under the ESA, we conclude that the species is likely to become 
endangered in the foreseeable future and qualifies as a threatened 
species.
Significant Portion of the Range
    Having determined that the white cockatoo meets the definition of 
threatened throughout its range, we must next consider whether there 
are any significant portions of its range that meet the definition of 
endangered. For the purpose of this analysis, we consider a portion of 
the white cockatoo's range to be significant if it is important to the 
conservation of its range because it contributes meaningfully to the 
representation, resiliency, or redundancy of its range (see Redford et 
al. 2011). The best available information indicates that threats to the 
species occur throughout its range. Although declines on Halmahera have 
been quantified to some extent, the lack of any information, including 
quantitative population trend information for Bacan Island, precludes a 
comparison of the declines in these two portions of its range. Further, 
we found no information indicating that the threats are of greater 
magnitude or extent in any portion of its range on Halmahera Island. 
The limited information available for the white cockatoo does not allow 
us to determine what portion of the range if any, would be impacted to 
a significant degree more than any other. Therefore, we conclude that 
the threats to the species are uniform throughout its range, and no 
portion of its range is currently in danger of extinction.

Species Information

C. Yellow-crested cockatoo (Cacatua sulphurea)

Taxonomy and Description

    The yellow-crested cockatoo has four recognized subspecies: Cacatua 
sulphurea abbotti (Oberholser, 1917), C. s. citrinocristata (Fraser, 
1844), C. s. sulphurea (Bonaparte, 1850), and C. s. parvula (Gmelin, 
1788). IUCN and BLI recognize C. sulphurea at the species level only. 
All four subspecies are recognized by ITIS (http://www.itis.gov). These 
four subspecies are endemic to Timor-Leste (an independent state which 
is adjacent to West Timor, a part of Indonesia) and Indonesia. The 
yellow-crested cockatoo inhabits forest, forest edge, scrub, and 
agricultural land (BLI 2013c, p. 2), but prefers primary lowland 
forest. Historically, it was found throughout the Lesser Sundas, on 
Sulawesi and its satellite islands, on Nusa Penida (near Bali), and the 
Masalembu Islands (in the Java Sea). These subspecies (hereafter 
collectively referred to as the species) are found in forested habitat 
in the lowlands up to 500 m (1,640 feet) on Sulawesi and up to 800 m 
(2,625 feet) and sometimes 1,200 m (3,937 feet) in the Lesser Sundas 
(Snyder 2000, p. 69; Jones et al. 1995; Collar 1994). They prefer 
large, mature trees with nesting areas higher in the canopy, and they 
prefer internal forested areas to forest edges (Jones et al. 1995, pp. 
27-28, 39).
    There is substantial discussion in scientific literature that 
debates the classification of island species and whether they deserve 
species status rather than subspecies status (James 2010, pp. 1-5; 
Phillimore 2010, pp. 42-53; Pratt 2010, pp. 79-89). This is sometimes 
significant with respect to conservation measures, particularly when 
considering the criteria used by organizations such as the IUCN. IUCN 
accepts assessments of subspecies only if a global assessment of the 
species as a whole has occurred. These four subspecies may all be in 
fact species, but for the purpose of this rule, these four subspecies 
face the same threats, are all generally in the same region of 
Indonesia, and all have quite small populations. Absent peer-reviewed 
information to the contrary, and based on the best available 
information, we recognize all four subspecies as being valid. For the 
purpose of this rule, listing C. sulphurea, which includes all 
subspecies, is prudent.

Use of Scientific Names in This Section

    It is generally our practice to use the scientific name of the 
species in the beginning of the document for avian species, and, 
subsequently, refer to each species by their common name; however, in 
this section, we will generally refer to the species by their 
scientific names. There are many similar cockatoo species, some of 
which have similar sounding common names, which may cause some 
confusion. For example, the yellow-crested cockatoo is also referred to 
as the lesser sulphur-crested cockatoo, which is Cacatua sulphurea, but 
the sulphur-crested cockatoo, which is C. galerita, is endemic to 
Australia. Additionally, because there are four recognized subspecies 
of C. sulphurea, using their scientific names is more precise and 
clear. Finally, because the common names vary by locality, referring to 
these species by their scientific names is more effective.

Biology

    Two tree species used by Cacatua sulphurea for nesting include 
Sterculia foetida (wild almond tree) and Tetrameles nudiflora (Binong) 
(Widodo 2009, p. 85). Nesting cavities have been observed to be 6 to 18 
m (20 to 60 feet) above ground (Setiawan 1996 in Prijono 2008, p. 3). 
The breeding season does not appear to be set or restricted (Prijono 
2008, p. 3), and it may coincide with the availability of nutrients in 
food sources. Incubation is shared by both parents. Incubation lasts 28 
days, and the nestling period is 65 days until fledging (Cameron 2007, 
p. 140).
    C. sulphurea's diet includes Mangifera indica (mango); Carica 
papaya (papaya); Ficus spp. (fig); Psidium guajava (guava); Eugenia 
malaccensis (jambu bol); Opuntia elation (prickly pear cactus); Annona 
squamosa (srikaya); flowers of Cocos nucifer (coconut); Tamarindus 
indica (tamarind); flowers and fruit of Avicennia (mangrove); fruit of 
Dehaasia (marangtaipa) and young leaves of Sonneratia (mangrove); and 
ninifo, thought to be within the Canarium genus (Nandika 2006, p. 10).

Feral Populations

    Feral populations of released or escaped captive-held yellow-
crested cockatoos have established themselves outside of their native 
range; however, they exist in low numbers (Lin and Lee 2006, p. 188). 
Between 1986 and 2000, researchers observed 11 feral yellow-crested 
cockatoos in Taiwan (Ling and Lee 2006, p. 190). Cacatua sulphurea has 
also become feral in places such as Singapore, Hong Kong, New Zealand, 
and Western Australia. In 1998, the species was described as being 
locally common in south and east Singapore, including the islets of St 
John's and Sentosa, and reportedly breeding in gardens and parks, with 
possibly between 30 and 50 birds existing there (PHPA/LIPI/BirdLife 
International-IP 1998 in BLI 2001, p. 1652).

Population Estimates

    C. sulphurea was formerly common throughout much of its range. 
There is evidence of substantial population declines on the island of 
Sulawesi, where it may already be beyond recovery (Gilardi 2011, pers. 
comm.; Cahyadin and Arif 1994; Andrew and Holmes 1990), and the Lesser 
Sundas, where it is believed to be close to extinction on Sumbawa and 
Flores. It is

[[Page 35893]]

still fairly common in the Komodo National Park (Prijono et al. 2008, 
p. 7; Butchart et al. 1996). As of 2001, Cacatua sulphurea sulphurea 
only existed in tiny remnant numbers, except perhaps for a small 
population in Rawa Aopa Watumohai National Park (BLI 2001, p. 1648). C. 
sulphurea is extirpated on Lombok (BirdLife-IP in litt. 1997). C. s. 
abbotti is at a critically low population level; C. s. parvula is doing 
fairly well on Komodo in Komodo National Park; and C. s. 
citrinocristata persists but was steadily declining on Sumba (BLI 2001, 
p. 1648). On Nusa Penida, this subspecies was last recorded in 1986 
(van Helvoort in van Balen 1994).
    Population estimates for each subspecies vary in part due to the 
remoteness of the islands where they exist. The BLI Web site reported 
as of 2013 that 1,500-7,000 mature individuals are estimated to remain 
in the wild (BLI 2013c, accessed September 26, 2013). We believe, based 
on reports from local researchers and NGOs as we describe below, that 
the populations may be significantly less. However, there is consensus 
that the numbers of this species are rapidly declining in the wild (BLI 
2013c, pp. 1-2). Population estimates for each subspecies are as 
follows: Cacatua sulphurea abbotti, 40; C. s. citrinocristata, 100 to 
2,000; C. s. parvula, 800 to 1,500; C. s. sulphurea, 100 to 150. The 
population estimates and a discussion of the subspecies' status are 
presented in more detail below.

Cacatua sulphurea abbotti

    Abbott's cockatoo, the largest of the yellow-crested cockatoos, is 
known only from a single island in the Masalembu Archipelago, which is 
500 ha (1,235 ac) and in the Masalembu Archipelago in the Sulawesi 
Strait. This island is in the Java Sea, north of the cities of Surabaya 
and Bali, and east of southern Sumatra. The subspecies is considered to 
be extirpated from Masalembu Island (also known as Salembo Besar) 
(Indonesian Parrot Project 2010). C. s. abbotti has a mostly white body 
with a brilliant yellow, forward-curving crest, and slight yellow on 
its ear covert feathers. The species prefers very large trees within 
the Datiscaceae family for nesting (Snyder 2000, p. 69). When Abbott 
first found the endemic form abbotti in 1907, he ``reported it in 
hundreds'' on Masalembu (Oberholser 1917 in BLI 2001, p. 1651). Only 
between 8 and 10 individuals of the subspecies abbotti were located in 
1993 on the Masalembu Islands (Jones et al. in prep. in Cahyadin and 
Arif 1994), and 6 to 8 birds were found in 1998. In 2008, a few 
individuals were found on Solombo Kecil Island. In IPP's last 
population survey, they found that, on Solombo Kecil, fewer than 30 
individuals remain (Metz 2010, pers. comm.). The population of this 
subspecies as a whole has declined more than 80 percent within three 
generations (45 years). Although the Indonesian Parrot Project has 
started a conservation program for this subspecies, it is too early to 
report on progress of the conservation program (BLI 2013c, pp. 1-2).

Cacatua sulphurea citrinocristata

    The subspecies citrinocristata is found on Sumba where the 2002 
estimate of the population was between 565 and 2,054 individuals 
(Cahill et al. 2006, p. 265; Persulessy et al. 2003 in Prijono 2008, p. 
5). Another 2002 survey by WCS found a density of 4.3 birds per km\2\ 
within the two national parks, Manupeu-Tanadaru and Laiwangi-Wanggameti 
(Kinnaird 2003 in Prijono 2008, p. 5). On Sumba, C. s. 
citrinocristata's population in 1995 was estimated to be just over 
3,000 (Jones et al. 1995, p. 39). Earlier surveys in 1989 and 1992 
(Marsden 1995 in Prijono 2008, p. 5) estimated the total population of 
C. s. citrinocristata to be between 1,150 and 2,644 birds. On Sumba, C. 
s. citrinocristata populations increased between 1992 and 2002, likely 
due to moratoria on international trade and local protections (Cahill 
et al. 2006, p. 162). The population on Sumba is thought to be roughly 
100 birds (Gilardi 2011, pers. comm.). The earlier population estimates 
may have been overly optimistic based on surveying techniques, or the 
population has rapidly declined.
    Sumba Island is located in the Lesser Sundas in southeastern 
Indonesia. The island is 12,000 km\2\ (4,633 mi\2\), 210 km (130 mi) in 
length, and 50 km (31 mi) south of Flores Island. Its highest point is 
Gunung Wanggameti at 1,225 m (4,019 feet). Precipitation is between 500 
and 2,000 mm annually (20 to 79 inches). As of 1995, forest covered 
less than 11 percent of the island (McKnight et al. in prep in Jones et 
al. 1995, p. 22) and was confined to relatively small and fragmented 
pockets.
    The two national parks, covering 1,350 km\2\ (521 mi\2\), were 
established on Sumba through Ministerial Decree No. 576/Kpts-II in 
1998. Manupeu-Tanadaru (280 km\2\ or 108 mi\2\) seems to have the 
healthiest population of cockatoos. It had the highest density of 
cockatoos when surveyed both in 1992 and 2002 (Cahill et al. 2006, p. 
164). However, of 33 forest patches surveyed, cockatoos were recorded 
in only 17 (O'Brien et al. 1997 in Cahill et al. 2006, p. 166).

Cacatua sulphurea parvula

    Historically, C. s. parvula was found on most of the Lesser Sunda 
Islands (also known as Nusa Tenggara) including Penida, Lombok, 
Sumbawa, Moyo, Komodo, Flores, Pantar, Alor, Timor, and Semau Islands. 
Currently, this subspecies is found on Alor, Pantar, Komodo, and 
Sumbawa Islands. As of 2008, in the past 10 years, populations of more 
than 10 cockatoos had been found at only 2 locations (Prijono 2008, p. 
6; Setiawan et al. 2000). In 1994, on Sumbawa, this subspecies was 
observed at 3 sites and reported by islanders to occur at 14 more 
locations although in very low numbers (Widodo 2009, p. 84; Setiawan et 
al. 2000). In 2000, 80 individuals were observed on Alor Island; the 
population estimate was 678 to 784 individuals on this island.
    As of 2001, it was thought that West Timor and other small islands 
in the Lesser Sundas could support only a few individuals (Agista and 
Rubyanto 2001; Setiawan et al. 2000; PHKA/LIPI/BirdLife International-
IP 1998). In 2004, the population estimate on Timor-Leste (East Timor) 
was between 500 and 1,000 individuals (Trainor et al. in litt. 2004). 
On Timor-Leste, C. s. parvula was recorded in six locations (Tilomar, 
Fatumasin, Sungai Clere, Lore, Monte Paitchau-Iralalora, Mount Diatuto) 
(Trainor 2002, pp. 93-99). Below is a summary of observations and 
population estimates for this subspecies.
     Alor Island: 80 individuals observed; population estimate 
was 678 to 784 individuals (Setiawan et al. 2000 in Widodo 2009, p. 
84).
     Flores Island: 14 individuals observed (Ria; Watubuku 
forest, part of Lewotobi area, see Butchart et al. 1996 in Widodo 2009, 
p. 84).
     Komodo Island: 137 individuals observed; population 
estimate was 150 (Imansyah et al. 2008).
     Moyo Island: 10 individuals observed (Setiawan et al. 
2000).
     Pantar Island: 29 individuals observed; population 
estimate was 444 to 534 individuals (Setiawan et al. 2000).
     Sumbawa Island: 14 individuals observed in 1996; 
subspecies observed at 3 sites and reported by islanders to occur at 14 
more, although in very low numbers (Setiawan et al. 2000).
     East Timor (Timor-Leste): Population estimate was 500 to 
1,000 individuals in 2004 (Trainor et al. 2005, pp. 121-130).
     West Timor: 8 individuals observed (Setiawan et al. 2000).

[[Page 35894]]

    The largest known population, which is on Komodo Island (311 km\2\ 
(120 mi\2\) in size) in Komodo National Park, was previously thought to 
be doing well, but the subspecies' population is declining even here 
although the exact reasons are unclear (Imansyah et al. 2008, 2 pp.). 
Cockatoo poaching is believed to be effectively eliminated due to 
surveillance and enforcement, and loss of mature trees or forest loss 
due to illegal logging is negligible (Ciofi and de Boer 2004 in Prijono 
2008, p. 8). Flocks of 20 to 30 birds were seen during observations 
between 1989 and 1995, and, in 1999, an estimated 100 birds were 
observed (Agista and Rubyanto 2001 and BirdLife 2001 in Prijono 2008, 
p. 8). In Komodo National Park, C. s. parvula was still relatively 
common prior to 2001, and was most frequently recorded in dry tropical 
forest (from sea level to 350 m (1,148 feet)) dominated by T. indicus 
(common name: date or tamarind) and Sterculia foetida (Java-olive, poon 
tree, or skunk tree) (Agista and Rubyanto 2001). The total population 
size in Komodo National Park, which spans several islands, is estimated 
to be approximately 150 individuals on Komodo Island (Imansyah et al. 
2008, p. 2) and about 100 individuals on Rinca Island (BLI 2013c, pp. 
1-2).

Cacatua sulphurea sulphurea

    Information from local NGOs suggests that only about 100 to 150 
individuals of this subspecies remain in the wild, and they are likely 
found only on Sulawesi Island. C. s. sulphurea was formerly widely 
distributed in Sulawesi (formerly called Celebes); however, since the 
early 1980s, this subspecies has become very rare (Prijono 2008, pp. 2-
3) due to high rates of poaching (CITES 2004a, p. 2). In 2001, between 
7 and 15 individuals were observed on Pasoso Island; however, the south 
and central parts of the island have limited suitable habitat 
consisting of mixed secondary forest, scrub, and dry land agricultural 
plots (Agista et al. 2001 in Prijono 2008, p. 5).
    Now, the subspecies is believed to occur only in a small region of 
Sulawesi (Metz 2010, pers. comm.). Approximately 10 years ago, it was 
documented in Rawa Aopa Watumohai National Park (RAWNP) (Agista et al. 
2001 in Prijono 2008, p. 5). Older studies suggested that, although 
some small populations of this subspecies may exist elsewhere, the 
remaining cockatoos were likely confined to two locations in southern 
Sulawesi: RAWNP and Buton Island and in central Sulawesi on Pasoso 
Island. Of these, RAWNP is clearly the most significant site. RAWNP is 
unique because it has seven ecosystem types: Tidal mudflats, mangrove 
forest, wooded savannas, hill forest, swamp forest, peat swamp, and 
cultivation. Therefore this is a significant site to concentrate 
conservation efforts. However, it is unlikely that this species occurs 
here currently, although a separate species, C. galerita, is believed 
to occur in this park.
Conservation Status for the Yellow-Crested Cockatoo
    In 1981, Cacatua sulphurea (and all of its subspecies) was listed 
in CITES Appendix II. In 2005, it was uplisted to Appendix I, thus 
commercial trade is generally prohibited (see above discussion with 
respect to CITES for additional information). C. sulphurea is listed on 
the IUCN Redlist as Critically Endangered. It is also protected in the 
United States by the WBCA.
    It is against Indonesian law to capture Cacatua sulphurea for the 
export trade. C. sulphurea is protected by the Act on the Conservation 
of Biological Resources and their Ecosystems (Act No. 5 of 1990), and 
there has been no catch quota for this species since 1994. Violation of 
this law by capture, possession, or trade in this species could result 
in up to 5 years in prison and a fine of up to 200 million rupiahs 
($22,870 USD; Prijono 2008, p. 13). In 1997, C. sulphurea was protected 
within Indonesia by Forestry Ministerial Decrees No. 350/Kpts-II/1997 
and No. 522/Kpts-II/1997. Although a cooperative recovery plan has been 
developed and put into place for C. sulphurea, its effectiveness is 
unclear as there are no clear indications that the species' situation 
is improving. Protections exist in several areas such as the Rawa Aopa 
Watumohai and Caraente National Parks (on Sulawesi), which may support 
approximately 100 individuals (Nandika 2006, pp. 10-11); Suaka 
Margasatwa Nature Reserve on Pulau Moyo; Komodo National Park; and two 
national parks on Sumba, Manupeu-Tanahdaru and Laiwangi-Wanggameti. The 
Nini Konis Santana National Park in Timor also may have a population of 
approximately 100 birds (Trainor 2002 in Prijono 2008, p. 9). In Timor-
Leste, BirdLife International identified 16 Important Bird Areas 
(IBAs). Although this designation does not confer any measure of 
protection, some of these IBAs may be vital to this species, 
particularly since the majority of the IBAs are located in coastal 
areas (BirdLife International 2007).
    For Cacatua sulphurea abbotti, the Indonesian Parrot Project (IPP) 
initiated an intensive conservation program on Solombo Kecil Island. 
Visits were made to junior and senior high schools to teach students 
about the principles of conservation, increase their awareness of the 
plight of this species, and foster pride in this species, emphasizing 
that it is their rare and unique bird. Laws to protect these birds have 
been passed but only in the distant ``kabupatan'' (district) of Madura. 
These decrees are out of date, but officials plan to update them and 
extend them locally to the islands of the Masalembu Archipelago, where 
they are more likely to be enacted. Officers from the local armed 
forces and police were taught about the protections already in place 
nationally and internationally, and were encouraged to conserve the 
birds (IPP 2008, pp. 3-4). Nest boxes and use of wardens are other 
conservation methods used. Konservasi Kakatua Indonesia (KKI, also 
known as Cockatoo Conservation Indonesia) is another NGO working to 
protect this species.
    Only about 100 to 150 Cacatua sulphurea sulphurea are left in the 
wild, solely on Sulawesi Island. Although IPP instituted a conservation 
program for this subspecies as of 2011, it is still in its preliminary 
stages.

Evaluation of Factors Affecting the Yellow-Crested Cockatoo

    We examined the factors affecting the species based on section 
4(a)(1) of the ESA. Under the ESA and our implementing regulations, a 
species may warrant listing if it is endangered or threatened 
throughout all or a significant portion of its range. The yellow-
crested cockatoo is highly restricted in its range, and the threats to 
it occur throughout its range. Therefore, we assessed the status of the 
species throughout its entire range. We consider all of the subspecies 
to be facing equivalent threats; their habitats are very similar, and 
they are all island endemics in the same region. Like the white 
cockatoo, the greatest threats to cockatoos in Indonesia and other 
range countries is poaching from the wild for the illegal pet trade 
(usually nestlings are taken), logging, and other forms of 
deforestation and habitat destruction. In order to be efficient, if the 
threats are the same threats affecting a species discussed above, we 
summarize these threats and refer to a discussion in the document above 
if it is not unique to this species or subspecies.

Factor A. The Present or Threatened Destruction, Modification, or 
Curtailment of the Species' Habitat or Range

    Habitat destruction such as that described above for white 
cockatoos

[[Page 35895]]

also threatens Cacatua sulphurea. Deforestation is pervasive throughout 
Indonesia and Timor-Leste (Lee et al. 2013, p. 1; Laurance 2007, p. 
1,544; Costin and Powell 2006, p. 2). For example, on one island 
inhabited by this species, trees that are preferred by this species to 
provide food and nest holes for C. s. abbotti have been eliminated due 
to logging. Their habitat on this island has been essentially destroyed 
and replaced with coconut palms. Almost total destruction of habitat 
flora, such as kapuk trees (Ceiba pentandra) and mangrove (Avicennia 
apiculata), which are preferred by the species, has occurred (IPP 2008, 
p. 3). Cockatoos consume fruit of tall timber trees such as ``kayu 
besi'' (Intsia bijuga), the source of ``ironwood'' for building, and 
tangkalase (scientific name unknown), a deciduous hardwood tree 
(Nandika 2006, p. 10). These trees are disappearing from the island. 
Researchers noted that cockatoo nests seemed to be safe from trappers 
if they were sufficiently high. The decrease in such trees likely 
played a vital role in the species' decline (Marsden and Jones 1997 in 
Snyder 2000, p. 70) in two ways: By decreasing suitable trees for 
nesting sites and by forcing cockatoos to locate nesting sites lower in 
the canopy.
    This type of habitat loss affects all four subspecies. In the case 
of Cacatua sulphurea abbotti, coconut palms have been planted, 
displacing their favored habitat flora such as kapuk trees and 
mangrove. The main cause of forest loss for C. s. citrinocristata has 
been the clearing and repeated burning of vegetation to provide land 
for grazing and cultivation, although between 1992 and 2002, there was 
no evidence of additional forest loss (Cahill et al. 2006, p. 165). 
Removal of trees for local use occurs, but no legal commercial logging 
occurs on Sumba. In many areas, as a result of the shifting cultivation 
and annual burning for cattle grazing, the original vegetation has been 
replaced by fire-resistant trees, shrubs, and grasses. Where grazing 
and burning have been particularly intensive, the grasslands have 
become degraded and soil erosion is evident. A study found that, on 
Sumba Island, birds were absent or rare in forest areas of less than 10 
km\2\ (Kinnaird et al. 2003 in Prijono 2008, p. 4). Jones et al. 
indicated that, in order to protect the few remaining C. s. 
citrinocristata, remaining forest areas on Sumba Island must be 
preserved (1995, p. 49).
    For Cacatua sulphurea parvula, the largest population is thought to 
be on Komodo Island in Komodo National Park. This park extends over 
three major islands: Komodo, Rinca and Padar, in addition to several 
smaller islands (http://www.komodonationalpark.org, accessed March 3, 
2011). Its total marine and land surface area is 1,817 km\2\ (701 
mi\2\). Due to the dryer climate, wildfires are a problem (Imansyah, 
unpublished, in Imansyah et al. 2008, p. 2). Researchers believe that 
the species' decline may be due to the lack of nesting sites.
    C. sulphurea predominately resides in lowland forests at elevations 
between 100 to 600 m (328 to 1,968 feet) throughout these islands, with 
the highest densities of birds occurring in little-disturbed forests. 
The locations where the subspecies is thought to exist currently, as 
well as the most recent population estimates, may be found below under 
the Factor B discussion. Both legal and illegal logging have been the 
primary threats to the habitat of this species, with the threats 
occurring throughout the islands in lowland forests, decreasing 
available habitat (Widodo 2009, p. 81; Prijono 2008, p. 1). For 
example, research found that, for every 100 km\2\ (38.6 mi\2\) of 
Seram's primary forests that were selectively logged in the last 6 
years, 700 birds were likely lost from the cockatoo population (Marsden 
1992, p. 12). Similarly, for every 100 km\2\ of locally disturbed 
secondary forest that were converted to plantations, 600 birds were 
likely lost from the cockatoo population. Even when habitat is 
protected, generally little undisturbed habitat is available, and it is 
of less suitable quality.
    Cockatoos are highly impacted by selective logging of primary 
forests, especially because reduced-impact logging techniques are 
seldom applied (Lee et al. 2013, pp. 1-3; Kim et al. 2013, pp. 1-7). 
Selective logging, which targets mature trees, has a substantial 
negative impact on tree-cavity nesters such as Cacatua sulphurea 
because the species requires large trees for nesting. The abundance of 
cockatoos is often related to the density of its preferred nest trees 
(trees that would be impacted by logging).
    After the primary forest is logged, land use surveys on other 
Indonesian islands show that the secondary forest is generally 
converted to other uses or logged again rather than being allowed to 
return to forested land. Therefore, although cockatoos may continue to 
inhabit secondary or degraded forests on their respective islands, 
their populations will be at a substantially fewer number. The trend of 
high loss of primary forests and degradation of secondary forests is of 
concern because little is known about the reproductive ecology of 
Cacatua sulphurea in the wild, including breeding success in mature 
forests versus secondary forests, and whether these cockatoos will 
survive in degraded forests in the long term. However, surveys indicate 
that the species is declining in the wild.
    In summary, extensive logging, both legal and illegal, is a threat 
to Cacatua sulphurea habitat. In some areas, deforestation and habitat 
degradation are still ongoing. The populations have decreased on all 
islands, with no sign of improvement. Therefore, we find that the 
present and threatened destruction, modification, or curtailment of its 
habitat is a threat to the continued existence of this species 
throughout all of its range.

Factor B. Overutilization for Commercial, Recreational, Scientific, or 
Educational Purposes

    Cacatua sulphurea is also affected by poachers who sell the species 
as pets for the pet trade. Not only are cockatoos desirable as pets, 
but this species is also very vocal and conspicuous, making it an easy 
target for poachers (Prijono 2008, pp. 4-5; Jepson and Ladle 2005, pp. 
442, 447). Extremely heavy trade during the 1970s and 1980s was 
indicated as the main cause of the decline of this species (BLI 2004 in 
Cahill et al. 2006, p. 161; BirdLife International-IP, 1998). Between 
1981 and 1992, exports from Indonesia of C. sulphurea were reported to 
have been 96,785 (UNEP-WCMC, in Cahill 2006, p. 162). In 1992, 
cockatoos were worth approximately $55 USD to the wholesalers who 
export birds to Java (Marsden 1995 in Cahill et al. 2006, p. 165).
    From the data collected by ProFauna about animal markets in Java 
and Bali, the domestic trade in parrots is still high (ProFauna 2008, 
pp. 2-8). Many investigations indicate that these cockatoos could 
fairly easily be exported, and for some birds, their origin would be 
unknown, yet these birds may be listed as captive-origin (BLI 2003, p. 
2).
    On Sumba Island, evidence of cockatoo trapping was seen in 1996 
(Kinnaird 1999), and shipments of cockatoos were confiscated on Sumba 
in 1998 and again in 2002 (when 32 were seized). In 2002, an 
investigation found that 1 collector in Waikabubak exported 52 yellow-
crested cockatoos to other islands (Persulessy et al. 2003 in CITES 
2004a, p. 6). In 2002, evidence was found of cockatoo trapping at 
Manupeu and Langgaliru, mainly in the form of snaring. Many trees with 
nests at Poronumbu even had ladders attached to them for nest raiding, 
suggesting that trapping activity was relatively high at

[[Page 35896]]

this site even in 2002 (Cahill et al. 2006, p. 166).
    IPP, a local NGO which is actively working to protect Cacatua 
sulphurea, noted specific threats to the subspecies on Solombo Kecil 
Island. They found that usually nestlings, rather than adult birds, are 
taken. According to ProFauna, nestlings are worth 2 to 3 times more 
than adult cockatoos (2008, p. 8). Historically, cockatoos were trapped 
in large numbers by outside visitors who took them to Bali and Sumbawa 
Islands. Studies by social anthropologists of locals in Seram and 
Halmahera showed that parrot poaching accounted for 25 to 30 percent of 
their cash income (Badcock in litt. 1997, in Snyder et al. 2000, p. 
60). Among the Halafara people of the Manusela valley on Seram, locals 
would catch and sell parrots to raise their bride price (Badcock in 
litt. 1997, in Snyder et al. 2000, p. 60). Now, with the marked decline 
in their numbers, the birds are even sought by government officials, 
who keep them as pets due to the prestige of owning such a rare bird 
(IPP 2008, p. 3).
    Due to high demand for cockatoos and based on trade reports in 
1993, the CITES Standing Committee recommended that countries suspend 
imports from Indonesia, pending surveys to assess the status of the 
species after a significant trade review (CITES 2001, AC17 Inf. 3 p. 4; 
CITES Notification to the Parties No. 737). Singapore continued to 
reexport wild-caught birds originating from Indonesia after the export 
suspension of Indonesia in 1994 (CITES 2001, AC17 Inf. 3 p. 4). In 
total, 1,229 wild-caught birds were reported to be reexported from 
Singapore between 1994 and 1999 (WCMC 2001 in CITES 2004a, pp. 9-10; 
CITES 2001, AC17 Inf. 3 p. 4). Although trade was recognized to be a 
problem, this species was not listed on Appendix I of CITES until 2005. 
Poaching for the pet trade, as with the other cockatoo species 
referenced in this rule, is a significant threat to this species.
    Although some subspecies are monitored and are on remote islands, 
poaching still occurs. Poaching can be extremely lucrative, and there 
is relatively low risk involved in poaching. None of these subspecies 
is fully protected from the illegal pet trade. Based on our review, we 
find that overutilization, specifically poaching for the domestic pet 
trade, continues to be a threat to Cacatua sulphurea throughout its 
range.

Factor C. Disease or Predation

    There is no evidence that disease or predation is a threat to 
Cacatua sulphurea in the wild. Our review did not find any indication 
that disease is a threat to C. sulphurea; however, we found reports of 
psittacine beak and feather disease (PBFD) in C. sulphurea when these 
birds were imported into the United States in the 1970s and 1980s. PBFD 
is a viral disease that originated in Australia and affects both wild 
and captive birds, causing chronic infections resulting in either 
feather loss or deformities of beak and feathers (Cameron 2007, p. 82). 
As described earlier in this document, although some cockatoo species 
are susceptible to this virus, we have no indication that PBFD 
adversely affects the C. sulphurea at the population level in the wild.
    With respect to predation, two predators, a spotted kestrel (Falco 
moluccensis) and a white bellied sea-eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster), 
have been observed attacking cockatoos (Prijono 2008, pp. 4-5). 
Although C. sulphurea has natural predators, to our knowledge, these 
predators are not having a negative impact on the species. After a 
review of the best scientific and commercial information, we conclude 
that neither disease nor predations are threats to C. sulphurea.

Factor D. The Inadequacy of Existing Regulatory Mechanisms

    After surveys conducted in the late 1990s by the Directorate-
General of Forest Protection and Nature Conservation (PHPA) and 
BirdLife International-Indonesia, it was determined that Cacatua 
sulphurea populations had collapsed (Snyder et al. 2000, p. 59). Prior 
to 1993, at which time legal trade was prohibited, a reported average 
of 1,600 C. s. citrinocristata individuals were being removed from 
Sumba annually, yet the 1992 population was only approximately 3,200 
(Cahill et al. 2006, p. 161). This level of trade was obviously 
unsustainable. The population had increased, likely due to the 
moratorium on international trade and local protections (Cahill et al. 
2006, p. 164); however, the population is declining again (BLI 2013c; 
Metz 2010, pers. comm.). In 1992, the Regent of West Sumba (Decree no. 
147) banned trapping and transport of cockatoos. This action was 
followed by a similar decree in East Sumba (Decree no. 21), and in 
1994, the government of Indonesia imposed a zero export quota (Cahill 
et al. 2006, p. 162). In 1997, this species was provided additional 
protection by the Forestry Ministerial Decrees No. 350/Kpts-II/1997 and 
No. 522/Kpts-II/1997.
    According to a CITES 2004 proposal to uplist Cacatua sulphurea to 
Appendix I, the Philippines, Singapore, South Africa, and Indonesia 
were the main countries exporting captive-bred specimens of Cacatua 
sulphurea. In Indonesia and Singapore, there has been a ``sudden turn 
up of captive bred specimens since 1994, the time the legal trade in 
wild specimens stopped'' (CITES 2004, p. 5). In 2004, two captive-
breeding operations of C. sulphurea were identified in Indonesia: PT. 
Bali Exotica Fauna and PT. Anak Burung Tropikana. Both of these 
companies were located in Bali Province (CITES 2004a, p. 5). Currently, 
there is one CITES-registered operation for breeding C. sulphurea for 
commercial purposes (CITES 2014, http://cites.org/eng/common/reg/cb/summary.html, Accessed May 20, 2014).
    When the proposal to transfer the Cacatua sulphurea from Appendix 
II to Appendix I (CITES CoP13, 2-14 October, Bangkok, Thailand) was 
under consideration in 2004, BLI noted in their position paper that the 
difficulty in distinguishing captive-bred birds from wild birds was 
facilitating illegal capture from the wild and illegal international 
trading of the captured birds (BLI 2003). They pointed to examples of 
these birds found in markets in Indonesia (BLI 2003 p. 2).
    Between 2000 and 2009, the UNEP-WCMC Trade Database indicated that 
6,485 live specimens of Cacatua sulphurea were exported (subspecies are 
unknown). Nearly all of these were documented as captive-bred, but 
wildlife laundering is quite lucrative and does still occur (ProFauna 
2010; 2008; Cant[uacute]-Guzm[aacute]n et al. 2007, 121 pp.).
    Between 2010 and 2013 (complete trade data was not available for 
2013), the UNEP-WCMC Trade Database indicated no exports of Cacatua 
sulphurea were from Indonesia (http://trade.cites.org, accessed May 19, 
2014). CITES regulates international trade of this species, and we have 
no evidence to suggest that CITES is inadequate in regulating legal 
trade of this species.
    A 2003 IUCN review found that Cacatua sulphurea was readily 
available in Indonesian bird markets (BLI 2003, pp. 1-2). As described 
above for the Philippine cockatoo, poaching is relatively easy and 
lucrative, poverty is widespread, and local communities have little 
incentive or awareness to conserve their resources. Although the 
species occurs within a number of protected areas, and a recovery plan 
was initiated in 1998, poaching is still occurring (ProFauna 2008). 
Birds are still likely smuggled to and exported from Singapore and the 
Philippines (ProFauna 2008). Continued trapping and large-scale logging 
that are not

[[Page 35897]]

sufficiently regulated or mitigated by the Indonesian Government remain 
threats to the species. For some subspecies, there are specific local 
protections in place. For example, a local law for the protection of C. 
s. abbotti exists, which IPP assisted in obtaining in 2010. However, 
these laws are inadequate to combat the threats facing the species 
according to a local NGO who works on the conservation of this species 
(Metz 2010, pers. comm.).
    With respect to the adequacy of internal government controls within 
Indonesia, we find that they are inadequate (refer to discussion and 
finding under Factor D for the white cockatoo, which faces the same 
threats with respect to this factor). Poaching and illegal trade of 
this species continue to occur. This species continues to experience 
population declines, and the protections in place are inadequate to 
protect this species. Therefore, we find that the inadequacy of 
regulatory mechanisms is a threat to Cacatua sulphurea throughout its 
range.

Factor E. Other Natural or Manmade Factors Affecting Its Continued 
Existence

Interspecific Competition
    The Komodo dragon (Varanus komodoensis) preys upon eggs and uses 
nests of Cacatua sulphurea during the species' arboreal phase. 
Competition between the dragon and cockatoo has been observed in 
attempts to use the tree Sterculia foetida for nesting (Agista and 
Rubyanto 2001 in Prijono 2008, p. 4). Although individuals of C. 
sulphurea may be subject to occasional competition with Komodo dragons, 
we have no evidence that this is occurring at a level that may affect 
the status of C. sulphurea on Komodo Island as a whole.
Small and Declining Population
    All four subspecies of Cacatua sulphurea have very limited 
geographic ranges and small, declining populations. Their existing 
populations are extremely localized, and sometimes geographically 
isolated from one another, leaving them vulnerable to localized 
extinctions from habitat modification and destruction, natural 
catastrophic changes to their habitat (e.g., flood scour, drought), 
other stochastic disturbances, and decreased fitness from reduced 
genetic diversity. Fewer than 1,000 to 2,000 individuals likely 
represent each subspecies remaining in the wild; in the case of C. s. 
abbotti and C. s. sulphurea, likely fewer than 100 remain of each 
subspecies (Metz 2010, pers. comm.) (see Table 2).

          Table 2--Yellow-Crested Cockatoo Population Estimates
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                    Where found and    Estimated number
             Species              date of population   remaining in the
                                       estimate              wild
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Yellow-crested cockatoo (Cacatua  Indonesia and       1,500 to ~ 5,000.*
 sulphurea)..                      Timor-Leste.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                               Subspecies
------------------------------------------------------------------------
C. s. abbotti...................  Sulawesi Strait     fewer than 30.
                                   (2010).
C. s. citrinocristata...........  Sulawesi Strait     565 to 2,054.
                                   (2002).
C. s. parvula...................  Sulawesi Strait     500 to 2,000.
                                   (2000, 2009).
                                  Timor (2000, 2004)  500.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
C. s. sulphurea.................  Sulawesi Strait     100 to 150.
                                   (2010).
------------------------------------------------------------------------
* Number includes all four subspecies.

    Small, isolated populations of wildlife species that have gone 
through a reduction in population numbers can be susceptible to 
demographic and genetic problems (Purvis et al. 2000, p. 1949; Shaffer 
1981, pp. 130-134). A small, declining population size renders a 
species vulnerable to any of several risks including inbreeding 
depression, loss of genetic variation, and accumulation of new 
mutations. A species' small population size, combined with its 
restricted range, may increase the species' vulnerability to adverse 
natural events and manmade activities that destroy individuals and 
their habitat (Holsinger 2000, pp. 64-65; Young and Clarke 2000, pp. 
361-366; Primack 1998, pp. 279-308). Inbreeding can have individual or 
population-level consequences either by increasing the phenotypic 
expression (the outward appearance or observable structure, function, 
or behavior of a living organism) of recessive, deleterious alleles 
(harmful gene sequences) or by reducing the overall fitness of 
individuals in the population (Charlesworth and Charlesworth 1987, p. 
231; Shaffer 1981, p. 131). This, in turn, compromises a species' 
ability to adapt genetically to changing environments (Frankham 1996, 
p. 1,507) and reduces overall fitness of the species, thus increasing 
extinction risk (Reed and Frankham 2003, pp. 233-234).
    Based on the best scientific and commercial information available, 
we conclude that Cacatua sulphurea's very small and rapidly declining 
populations is a factor that negatively affects the species throughout 
its range, particularly when combined with other threats to this 
species.

Finding for the Yellow-Crested Cockatoo

    As required by the ESA, we considered the five factors in assessing 
whether Cacatua sulphurea is endangered or threatened throughout all or 
a significant portion of its range. We examined the best scientific and 
commercial information available regarding the past, present, and 
future threats faced by C. sulphurea. We reviewed the petition, 
information available in our files, and other available published and 
unpublished information.
    We analyzed the potential threats to Cacatua sulphurea, including 
habitat loss and habitat degradation, poaching for the domestic pet 
trade, disease and predation, and the inadequacy of regulatory 
controls. We found that habitat loss as a result of deforestation is a 
threat to C. sulphurea, and the subspecies are declining rangewide. 
This species faces immediate and significant threats, primarily from 
the destruction and modification of its habitats from logging (Factor 
A). Efforts such as reforestation and building of nest boxes may 
continue to improve the habitat of this species, which may subsequently 
increase their numbers. However, no improvement has been seen yet as a 
result of conservation efforts (Metz 2010, pers. comm.). We conclude 
that the present or threatened destruction, modification, or 
curtailment of its habitat or range is a significant threat to C. 
sulphurea.
    We found information that poaching for the domestic pet trade is 
also a

[[Page 35898]]

significant threat to the species. Illegal poaching of the cockatoo for 
the pet trade is still common, despite existing laws, education, and 
public awareness campaigns. Pet birds are an important part of 
Indonesian culture, with large numbers of wild-caught parrots traded 
domestically and internationally. Trappers remain active, and wild-
caught birds are openly sold in Asian markets (Prijono 2008, p. 18). 
Efforts to curtail illegal trade are hampered by Indonesia's large 
coastline and enforcement officials with limited resources and 
knowledge. The continuing illegal trade of the cockatoo is a threat to 
the survival of the species. Therefore, we find overutilization for 
commercial, recreational, scientific, or educational purposes (Factor 
B) is a threat to Cacatua sulphurea throughout its range.
    We found no evidence that diseases significantly affect Cacatua 
sulphurea in the wild. Other avian species may be susceptible to 
certain diseases but we have no evidence that disease occurs to an 
extent that it is a threat to this species. Predation was not found to 
affect C. sulphurea populations; however, we will continue to monitor 
this factor. Based on the best available information, we conclude that 
neither disease nor predation (Factor C) is a threat to the species 
throughout its range.
    Although Indonesia has a good legal framework to manage wildlife 
and their habitats, implementation of its laws and regulatory 
mechanisms has been inadequate to address the threats to Cacatua 
sulphurea. Logging laws and policies are frequently ignored and rarely 
enforced, and illegal logging is rampant, even occurring in national 
parks and nature reserves (Prijono 2008). The illegal trade of this 
species continues to occur. The current range of C. sulphurea is much 
smaller than its historical range. The population estimates for each 
subspecies range from 30 to 2,054 individuals. Threats to C. sulphurea 
continue, and based on the best available information, the population 
trends are declining. Thus, we conclude that inadequate regulatory 
mechanisms are a threat to C. sulphurea throughout its range.
    Finally, we conclude that effects that typically impact small, 
declining populations negatively affect this species, particularly when 
combined with the other threats affecting the species (Factor E).
    Because of the uniformity of the threats throughout its range, we 
find that there are no other listable entities that may warrant a 
different determination of status. Despite the conservation measures in 
place, this species faces severe threats, and the population trend for 
this species continues to decline. Based on our review of the best 
available scientific and commercial information pertaining to the five 
factors, we find that Cacatua sulphurea is in danger of extinction 
(endangered) throughout all of its range. Therefore, we are listing C. 
sulphurea as endangered under the ESA.

Available Conservation Measures

    Conservation measures provided to species listed as endangered or 
threatened under the Act include recognition, requirements for Federal 
protection, and prohibitions against certain practices. Recognition 
through listing results in public awareness, and encourages and results 
in conservation actions by Federal and State governments, private 
agencies and interest groups, and individuals.
    The ESA and its implementing regulations set forth a series of 
general prohibitions and exceptions that apply to all endangered and 
threatened wildlife. These prohibitions, at 50 CFR 17.21 and 17.31, in 
part, make it illegal for any person subject to the jurisdiction of the 
United States to ``take'' (includes harass, harm, pursue, hunt, shoot, 
wound, kill, trap, capture, or to attempt any of these) within the 
United States or upon the high seas; import or export; deliver, 
receive, carry, transport, or ship in interstate commerce in the course 
of commercial activity; or sell or offer for sale in interstate or 
foreign commerce any endangered wildlife species. It also is illegal to 
possess, sell, deliver, carry, transport, or ship any such wildlife 
that has been taken in violation of the ESA. Certain exceptions apply 
to agents of the Service and State conservation agencies.
    Permits may be issued to carry out otherwise prohibited activities 
involving endangered and threatened wildlife species under certain 
circumstances. Regulations governing permits for endangered species are 
codified at 50 CFR 17.22. With regard to endangered wildlife, a permit 
may be issued for the following purposes: For scientific purposes, to 
enhance the propagation or survival of the species, and for incidental 
take in connection with otherwise lawful activities. For threatened 
species, a permit may be issued for the same activities, as well as 
zoological exhibition, education, and special purposes consistent with 
the ESA.

Special Rule

    Section 4(d) of the ESA states that the Secretary of the Interior 
(Secretary) may, by regulation, extend to threatened species 
prohibitions provided for endangered species under section 9 of the 
ESA. Our implementing regulations for threatened wildlife in 50 CFR 
17.31 incorporate the section 9 prohibitions for endangered wildlife, 
except when a special rule is promulgated. For threatened species, 
section 4(d) of the ESA gives the Secretary discretion to specify the 
ESA prohibitions and any exceptions to those prohibitions that are 
appropriate for the species. A special rule allows us to include 
provisions that are tailored to the specific conservation needs of the 
threatened species and which may be more or less restrictive than the 
general provisions at 50 CFR 17.31.
    The finalized special rule for the white cockatoo, in most 
instances, adopts the existing conservation regulatory requirements of 
CITES and the WBCA as the appropriate regulatory provisions for the 
import and export of certain captive white cockatoos. It would also 
allow interstate commerce. The purpose of the WBCA is to promote the 
conservation of exotic birds and to ensure that international trade 
involving the United States does not harm exotic birds. The white 
cockatoo is also listed in Appendix II of CITES, a treaty that 
contributes to the conservation of the species by monitoring 
international trade and ensuring that trade in the species is not 
detrimental to its survival (see Conservation Status for the white 
cockatoo). However, import and export of birds taken from the wild 
after the date this species is listed under the ESA, take, and foreign 
commerce would need to meet the requirements of 50 CFR 17.31 and 17.32. 
``Take'' under the ESA includes both harm and harassment. When applied 
to captive wildlife, take does not include generally accepted animal 
husbandry practices, breeding procedures, or provisions of veterinary 
care for confining, tranquilizing, or anesthetizing, when such 
practices, procedures, or provisions are not likely to result in injury 
to the wildlife. When conducting an activity that could take or 
incidentally take wildlife, a permit under the ESA is required.
    On March 12, 2013, we published in the Federal Register (78 FR 
15624) a final rule listing the yellow-billed parrot with a special 
rule under section 4(d) of the Act, and correcting the salmon-crested 
cockatoo special rule under section 4(d) of the Act. In the preamble of 
that rule, we explained that we were adopting for yellow-billed parrot 
and correcting for salmon-crested cockatoo a provision similar to the 
one we proposed in the 4(d) rule for the white cockatoo, which would 
allow certain

[[Page 35899]]

acts in interstate commerce for yellow-billed parrot and salmon-crested 
cockatoos that may be conducted without a threatened species permit 
under 50 CFR 17.32. Consistent with our intent in proposing the 
exceptions contained in the 4(d) rule for the white cockatoo, we are 
amending the regulations found at 50 CFR 17.41(c) to include the white 
cockatoo among the species in the parrot family to which 50 CFR 
17.41(c) applies, including the provision that certain acts in 
interstate commerce of white cockatoos may proceed without a permit 
under the Act. This final special rule allows import and export of 
certain white cockatoos and interstate commerce of this species without 
a permit under the ESA as explained below.
    Import and export. This final special rule applies to all 
commercial and noncommercial international shipments of live white 
cockatoos and parts and products, including the import and export of 
personal pets and research samples. It allows a person to import or 
export a specimen that was held in captivity prior to the date this 
species is listed under the ESA or that was captive-bred, provided the 
import is authorized under CITES and the WBCA and export is authorized 
under CITES. The terms ``captive-bred'' and ``captivity'' used in the 
final special rule are defined in the regulations at 50 CFR 17.3 and 
refer to wildlife produced in a controlled environment that is 
intensively manipulated by man from parents that mated or otherwise 
transferred gametes in captivity. The final special rule applies to 
birds captive-bred in the United States and abroad. Import and export 
of specimens that have been held in captivity prior to the date this 
species is listed under the ESA or that were captive-bred would be 
allowed without a permit under the ESA provided the provisions of CITES 
and the WBCA are met. With respect to captive-bred specimens, the CITES 
export permits would need to indicate that the specimen was not taken 
from the wild by using a source code on the face of the permit other 
than U (unknown) or W (taken from the wild). If the specimen was taken 
from the wild prior to the date this species is listed under the ESA, 
the importer or exporter would need to demonstrate that the cockatoo 
was taken from the wild prior to that date. Under the special rule, a 
person would need to provide records, receipts, or other documents when 
applying for permits under CITES and the WBCA to show the specimen was 
held in captivity prior to the date this species is listed under the 
ESA.
    We assessed the conservation needs of the white cockatoo in light 
of the broad protections provided to the species under the WBCA and 
CITES. The best available commercial data indicate that the current 
threat to the white cockatoo stems from illegal trade in the domestic 
and international markets of Indonesia and surrounding countries. Thus, 
the general prohibitions on import and export contained in 50 CFR 
17.31, which extend only within the jurisdiction of the United States, 
would not regulate such activities. Accordingly we find that the import 
and export requirements of the final special rule provide the necessary 
and advisable conservation measures that are needed for this species.
    Interstate commerce. Under the special rule, a person may deliver, 
receive, carry, transport, or ship a white cockatoo in interstate 
commerce in the course of a commercial activity, or sell or offer to 
sell in interstate commerce a white cockatoo without a permit under the 
Act. At the same time, the prohibitions on take under 50 CFR 17.31 
apply under this special rule, and any interstate commerce activities 
that could incidentally take white cockatoos or otherwise prohibited 
acts in foreign commerce require a permit under 50 CFR 17.32.
    Although we do not have current data, we believe a large number of 
white cockatoos exist in the United States. ISIS (International Species 
Information System) information as of 2008 indicated that 252 white 
cockatoos were held in U.S. zoos (ISIS 2008, p. 4). This number is an 
underestimate, as some zoos do not enter data into the ISIS database. 
We have no information to suggest that interstate commerce activities 
are associated with threats to the white cockatoo or would negatively 
affect any efforts aimed at the recovery of wild populations of the 
species. Therefore, because acts in interstate commerce within the 
United States have not been found to threaten the white cockatoo, the 
species is otherwise protected in the course of interstate commercial 
activities under the incidental take provisions and foreign commerce 
provisions contained in 50 CFR 17.31, and international trade of this 
species is regulated under CITES and the WBCA, we find this special 
rule adopts appropriate prohibitions from section 9(a)(1) of the Act 
and contains all the prohibitions and authorizations necessary and 
advisable for the conservation of the white cockatoo.
    Pre-Act Exemptions. As stated previously, under the Special Rule, 
import and export of birds taken from the wild after the date this 
species is listed under the ESA, take, and foreign commerce would still 
need to meet the requirements of 50 CFR 17.31 and 17.32. However, under 
the terms of section 9(b)(1) of the Act, white cockatoos held in 
captivity or a controlled environment prior to the date the species is 
listed under the Act would be considered ``pre-Act'' and would not 
require permits for take or foreign commerce unless they are 
subsequently held or used in the course of a ``commercial activity.'' 
For example, if a taking by the owner of a pet bird occurred and that 
pet bird was (1) held in captivity prior to the listing date and (2) 
not subsequently held or used in the course of a commercial activity, 
then that taking would be exempt and not a violation of the ESA under 
the terms of section 9(b)(1). Section 3(2) of the Act and our 
regulations at 50 CFR 17.3 define ``commercial activity'' as all 
activities of actual or intended transfer of wildlife or plants from 
one person to another person in the pursuit of gain or profit, 
including, but not limited to, the buying or selling of commodities and 
activities conducted for the purpose of facilitating such buying and 
selling. For example, when a specimen is sold or offered for sale, it 
loses its pre-Act status. The Act also provides, however, that 
exhibition of commodities by museums or similar cultural or historical 
organizations is not included in the ESA's definition of ``commercial 
activity.'' For example, when a commodity containing a white cockatoo 
feather and acquired by a museum prior to the listing date is sold in 
foreign commerce for exhibition by a second museum after the listing 
date, it would not lose its pre-Act status (provided it was not held or 
used in the course of a commercial activity by a non-qualifying entity 
in the time between listing and the transaction between the two 
museums). You may obtain information about permits or other 
authorizations to carry out otherwise prohibited activities by 
contacting the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Division of Management 
Authority, Branch of Permits, 4401 N. Fairfax Drive, Room 212, 
Arlington, VA 22203; telephone: (703) 358-2104 or (toll free) (800) 
358-2104; facsimile: (703) 358-2281; email: 
managementauthority@fws.gov; Web site: http://www.fws.gov/international/index.html.
    Section 7(a) of the Act, as amended, and as implemented by 
regulations at 50 CFR part 402, requires Federal agencies to evaluate 
their actions within the United States or on the high seas with respect 
to any species that is proposed or listed as endangered or threatened

[[Page 35900]]

and with respect to its critical habitat, if any is being designated. 
However, given that these species are not native to the United States, 
we are not designating critical habitat for these species under section 
4 of the Act.

Required Determinations

National Environmental Policy Act (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.)

    We have determined that we do not need to prepare an environmental 
assessment, as defined under the authority of the National 
Environmental Policy Act of 1969, in connection with regulations 
adopted under section 4(a) of the Act. We published a notice outlining 
our reasons for this determination in the Federal Register on October 
25, 1983 (48 FR 49244).

References Cited

    A list of all references cited in this document is available at 
http://www.regulations.gov, Docket No. FWS-R9-ES-2010-0099, or upon 
request from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Ecological Services 
Program, Branch of Foreign Species (see FOR FURTHER INFORMATION 
CONTACT).

Authors

    The primary authors of this rule are staff members of the Branch of 
Foreign Species, Ecological Services Program, U.S. Fish and Wildlife 
Service.

List of Subjects in 50 CFR Part 17

    Endangered and threatened species, Exports, Imports, Reporting and 
recordkeeping requirements, Transportation.

Regulation Promulgation

    Accordingly, we are amending part 17, subchapter B of chapter I, 
title 50 of the Code of Federal Regulations, as set forth below:

PART 17--[AMENDED]

0
1. The authority citation for part 17 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  16 U.S.C. 1361-1407; 1531-1544; 4201-4245; unless 
otherwise noted.


0
2. Amend Sec.  17.11(h) by adding new entries for ``Cockatoo, 
Philippine'', ``Cockatoo, white'', and Cockatoo, yellow-crested'' in 
alphabetical order under Birds to the List of Endangered and Threatened 
Wildlife, as follows:


Sec.  17.11  Endangered and threatened wildlife.

* * * * *
    (h) * * *

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                        Species                                                    Vertebrate
--------------------------------------------------------                        population where                                  Critical     Special
                                                            Historic range       endangered or         Status      When listed    habitat       rules
           Common name                Scientific name                              threatened
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
                                                                      * * * * * * *
              Birds
 
                                                                      * * * * * * *
Cockatoo, Philippine.............  Cacatua               Philippines........  Entire.............  E                       786           NA           NA
                                    haematuropygia.
 
                                                                      * * * * * * *
Cockatoo, white..................  Cacatua alba........  Indonesia..........  Entire.............  T                       786           NA     17.41(c)
Cockatoo, yellow-crested.........  Cacatua sulphurea...  Indonesia and Timor- Entire.............  E                       786           NA           NA
                                                          Leste (East Timor).
 
                                                                      * * * * * * *
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


0
3. Amend Sec.  17.41 by revising paragraph (c) introductory text and 
paragraph (c)(2)(ii) introductory text, and adding paragraph 
(c)(2)(ii)(C), to read as follows:


Sec.  17.41  Special rules--birds.

* * * * *
    (c) The following species in the parrot family: Salmon-crested 
cockatoo (Cacatua moluccensis), yellow-billed parrot (Amazona 
collaria), and white cockatoo (Cacatua alba).
* * * * *
    (2) * * *
    (ii) Specimens held in captivity prior to certain dates: You must 
provide documentation to demonstrate that the specimen was held in 
captivity prior to the applicable date specified in paragraphs 
(c)(2)(ii)(A), (B), or (C) of this section. Such documentation may 
include copies of receipts, accession or veterinary records, CITES 
documents, or wildlife declaration forms, which must be dated prior to 
the specified dates.
* * * * *
    (C) For white cockatoos: July 24, 2014 (the date this species was 
listed under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act) (16 
U.S.C. 1531 et seq.)).
* * * * *

    Dated: June 6, 2014.
Stephen Guertin,
Acting Director, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
[FR Doc. 2014-14624 Filed 6-23-14; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4310-55-P