Author: Erica Royer

Erica Royer

Erica Royer is an aviculturist at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute, where she works with some of the rarest bird species in the world. Fascinated by animal behavior from a young age, Erica pursued a bachelor's degree in psychology and a master's in experimental psychology, publishing her thesis on dominance behavior in Caribbean flamingos. From that point forward, her love of birds and the conservation of endangered species was solidified. At the Smithsonian, she manages breeding programs for Guam birds and red siskins, as well as caring for other avian species, and works to study, propagate and even reintroduce several species.

Tasi is a 4-year-old Guam rail and a marvel, considering that just a few decades ago his species nearly disappeared.
A 28-day-old female Guam kingfisher chick at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute.

Raising One of the World's Rarest Birds

September 29th, 2020, 10:36AM
A 41-day-old Guam kingfisher chick at the Smithsonian's National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute. With fewer than 140 Guam kingfishers left in the world, all living in human care, every chick is precious.

Growing Up Guam Kingfisher

August 25th, 2020, 10:20AM
Animu and Giha’s male Guam kingfisher chick at 23 days old.
Female Guam kingfisher Giha at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute. Guam kingfishers are extinct in the wild, but scientists are working to change that by breeding the species for release in the near future.
A female Guam kingfisher at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute in 2012.

Guam Kingfishers: A Truly Rare Breed

April 21st, 2020, 11:05AM
After being one step away from extinct, the Guam rail has made a comeback and is now classified as critically endangered. It is only the second time in history that a bird species has recovered from being extinct in the wild.