Although 71 Spix's macaws exist in captivity, the last known bird in the wild disappeared in 2000 and no others are known to remain. The species is currently listed as "critically endangered" instead of "extinct in the wild" because not all areas of potential habitat have been thoroughly surveyed. The bird is native to northern Brazil and in 1987 the three known remaining birds were captured for trade. However, a single male bird was discovered in 1990 and paired with a female bird in captivity, but seven weeks after the female's release, she collided with a power line and died.
The decline of the Spix's macaw is attributed to hunting and trapping, habitat destruction and the introduction of Africanized bees, or "killer bees," which compete for nesting sites.