Fernando Ayerbe, Ornithology

Letter of support from Fernando Ayerbe, ornithologist

Fernando Ayerbe Quiñones Neiva, Huila Tel.: 3007365771 CEO Avifauna Colombiana

Andrea (Drea) Burbank, MD CEO, Savimbo Inc. Carrera 6 - Numero #3-21 Villagarzon, Putumayo, Colombia

Re: Savimbo Biodiversity Methodology Based on Sentinel Species

Dear Dr. Burbank,

I am writing to express my support for your proposed biodiversity methodology that utilizes sentinel species as a metric for measuring preserved biodiversity in tropical forests.

I come from the perspective of a biologist with experience in zoology, advocating for Indigenous knowledge for 15 years in various Colombian ecosystems, engaging in conservation efforts alongside rural communities and creating educational materials focused on these communities.

There is a critical need for regulation in markets/economy/science/research to support the traditional relationship between Indigenous cultures and the land, allowing for the protection of endangered or undiscovered biodiversity, plants, and medicine.

I support this methodology because it offers a simple and logical application, facilitates the transmission of traditional knowledge, and aligns with the traditional activities of hunters/gatherers. The development of this methodology could be highly beneficial, not only for the Amazon Piedmont region but also for any area where the role of Indigenous peoples as guardians of biodiversity is endangered and requires special care and attention.

It is essential that international markets focused on biodiversity provide a means of livelihood and empowerment for Indigenous peoples who have preserved their ecosystems. For this reason, biodiversity credits are a reasonable and viable way to generate non-hierarchical and decentralized employment in this population sector, which is focused on conserving and protecting forest biodiversity.

I am familiar with several aspects of the methodology that have been intentionally designed to ensure scientific coherence and market scalability while providing direct market access to Indigenous groups.

  • The methodology will allow for the use of trusted human coders for coordinates and date/time stamps of raw observation point data (video or audio recordings), relying on verification/validation bodies to validate this data.

  • The distribution area of sentinel species will be simplified to a circle with a documented observation point at the center, and the circle's area will be determined based on specific habitat requirements derived from public sources.

  • The methodology will classify rare/umbrella/key/endangered species into four levels (platinum, gold, silver, and bronze) based on their ability to represent a conserved biodiversity ecosystem.

  • Individual species identification or density calculations will not be performed. Individual observations will be equated if they occur within a 2-month timeframe and at the same geocoordinates.

The reference biodiversity will be calculated from public sources, sometimes for a much broader region, organized by taxonomic kingdom.

While many researchers have access to much broader scientific tools for quantifying biodiversity, this methodology is sufficient to allow for scientific accuracy, transparency, and standardization across ecosystems and among many different endangered species. Most importantly, it has been designed with traditional ways of life in mind and has been simplified to enable cultural translation and the preservation of traditional knowledge. I believe it establishes a solid standard upon which a robust market can be built, enabling immediate conservation of critical areas worldwide.

I am available to respond to information requests and willing to provide an independent voice regarding the validity of this methodology.


Fernando Ayerbe Quiñones C.C.: 4617411 CEO Avifauna Colombiana

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