"Banggai Crow", 8"x8" oil on panel.
For Artists for Conservation's Silent Skies mural.
This beautiful small crow dwells in the forests of Central Sulawesi in Indonesia. Once thought extinct and known only from two specimens collected before 1900, it was confirmed as rediscovered in 2007. Still, they are critically endangered, with fewer than 500 thought to remain. Habitat loss via deforestation is the largest threat to this species, but local advocates are attempting awareness programs to help the Banggai crow. I was particularly struck by this bird's large and haunting pale eyes, and painted it in portrait to emphasize its intelligent gaze.