As Hurricane Irma and Maria have left more than 300,000 people without power in the Caribbean, the flamingos of the Caribbean island of Dominica are suffering a severe shortage of food and water.
Dominica is one of the world’s largest flamingo reserves, with about one-fifth of the species in the world, but the flamingoes’ survival has been in question since the hurricanes made landfall.
“The flamingos have been a huge part of our tourism, and they’re also important as a wildlife source,” said Dominica’s president, Martin Sullivan.
“They’re a very important part of the ecosystem.
They’re the source of the food for other species.”
In the first days of the hurricanes, the Dominicans and their partners, the United States, Caribbean islands and Mexico, spent tens of millions of dollars to get flamingos to the island.
But now, the government is struggling to find new, sustainable ways to feed the flamingotors and keep them from starving.
“We’re seeing some of the animals are not being fed properly,” said Dr. Daniel Egan, the head of the veterinary hospital in Dominica.
“It’s really distressing to see.”
In Puerto Rico, where the population is about one million, the problem is worse.
The number of flamingo deaths in Puerto Rico has tripled since the first hurricane hit, the state health department said in a report released Monday.
And there are signs that it may get worse.
According to the report, the number of deaths due to dehydration or heat stress tripled in the last three weeks of the hurricane, compared to the same period last year.
The state also said that about 70% of the islands population had not received any food or water, and nearly all of them are on the verge of starvation.
For the past two weeks, the island of Martinique has been the focal point of a hunger strike to protest what they say is a lack of food.
“Our people are really struggling.
We’ve been on the streets for almost three weeks now,” said Doreen Guido, who is on the strike.
Guido and her friends are trying to feed their own children, but so far, they’ve only received some chicken and potatoes, and not enough to feed her own.
The protests have become a rallying cry for people to join them.
“It’s been really tough to live, but we’ve also been able to do what we’ve been doing, and we’ve seen our children grow up,” said Guido.
Guido says the protests have gotten so popular that she’s had to limit her hours of work to two days a week to keep her family fed.
The Dominicans are also trying to help.
On Tuesday, the president announced a plan to raise funds for the flamingots.
“They have to be given water, they have to get some food.
But they also have to go back to their homes and take care of their families,” he said.
The island has sent in its own flamingo rescue team, and is looking for new, more sustainable ways of feeding and feeding them.
The Department of Agriculture says the plan is being considered.
The government is hoping that a new program to help feed flamingo populations will be implemented soon.
For now, many of the flamingoing species are being left behind.
The island of Santo Domingo has been trying to rebuild its flamingo population from the ground up.
And in Dominicos northernmost island, the capital of Guadeloupe, some of their nests have been destroyed by Hurricane Maria.
“These flamingos are extremely endangered,” said Egan.
“The ones that are left are being killed.”