Yesterday a young Egyptian Vulture was released in the Sierra de Hornachos (Extremadura), properly equipped with a GPS/GSM transmitter. The bird, a young born this year, was found a month ago at a petrol station, disoriented and suffering malnutrition. After a short period of recovery in the wildlife rehabilitation center of AMUS (Acción por el Mundo Salvaje), it was now returned to the wild, in time to resume its migration to Africa – in the first few hours after release it already covered half-way to Gibraltar, from where it will cross the Mediterranean (see map attached) .
The release was organized by AMUS and the Regional Government of Extremadura, represented by the Director-General of the Environment Department. Students from the local primary school (Reyes Huertas de Puebla de la Reina) also attended the event, during which the birds was also baptized – Tizón (Blight).
The Egyptian Vulture is globally Endangered, since it is still declining across most of its global range. Spain is one of the strongholds of this species, and its population in Extremadura is estimated at 170 breeding pairs.
The VCF was also present at the event, and used the opportunity to take blood and other samples from the bird. These will be analysed to identify levels of heavy metals, veterinary agents, pesticides and antibiotics. Long live Tizón – we hope you arrive safely in Africa!