Mauritius bird conservationist in running for £63k wildlife prize
A CARMARTHEN eco-hero has been praised for saving pink pigeons, Mauritius kestrels, and echo parakeets from extinction. Carl Jones, from Carmarthen, now works on remote islands in the Indian Ocean.
Praising Dr Jones, Mark Stanley Price, a senior research fellow of the Wildlife Conservation Research Unit at the University of Oxford, said: "Carl has devoted a lifetime career to Mauritius and its wildlife which — like so many oceanic islands — has suffered so much from invasive species.
"In doing so, he has mentored and trained innumerable young Mauritians and young conservationists from a host of countries."
He said he is an outstanding naturalist and scientist.
"He is constantly curious and innovative, a mine of information and insights, and collaborative and focused," he added.
Dr Jones went to university in Swansea and regularly returns to Wales.
He is now the scientific director of the Mauritian Wildlife Foundation and International Conservation Fellow at the Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust, from his work in the Mascarene Islands.
The winner of the 2012 Indianapolis Prize receives £63,000 and will be announced in September.
The other prize finalists are Steven Amstrup, senior scientist at Polar Bears International; Markus Borner, head of the Africa programme for the Frankfurt Zoological Society; Rodney Jackson, founder and director of the Snow Leopard Conservancy; Russell Mittermeier, president of Conservation International; and Patricia Wright, director at the Institute for the Conservation of Tropical Environments at Stony Brook University and founder of the Centre ValBio in Madagascar.
Prize chair Myrta Pulliam added: "These conservationists' long-standing commitment and die-hard perseverance to protect endangered species and their environments embodies the mission of the Indianapolis Prize. We are honoured to recognise their efforts."
Source: This Is South Wales
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