We have started to get Bearded Vultures on the Move thanks to the generous support of our fundraising campaign backers. This morning colleagues at the Conservatoire D'espaces Naturels Asters in France were getting a rigorous workout attempting to catch the five birds who are being transported to Spain today.
Traveling to Spain
The bearded vulture captive-breeding network is made up of zoos, private collections and specialized breeding centres spread all over Europe. To be able to make long distance movements, many of the journeys the birds are taking will be broken up into stages, with birds spending time at centres to limit the stress of the move. The five birds being transported to the Vallcalent Breeding Centre in Spain are currently at the Conservatoire D'espaces Naturels Asters having been transported from Austria and Latvia.
TBG 327 male born in 1999 and BG 381 female born in 2001 are currently resident in Riga Zoo in Latvia, however, they have not been able to breed. These two birds started their journey a few weeks ago heading by car from Riga to the Richard Faust Zentrum Breeding Centre in Austria.
It’s hoped that these birds will find the right conditions at the Vallcalent Breeding Centre to breed and if their pairing doesn’t work, we will hopefully be able to pair them up with other birds.
Safe from disease
Also being transported today are male BG 1006 born in 2018 and female BG 911 female born in 2016. These two birds have been spending the last couple of weeks at Conservatoire D'espaces Naturels Asters, after traveling from the Richard Faust Zentrum Breeding Centre in Austria.
Last year at the Richard Faust Zentrum Breeding Centre there was an outbreak of West Nile virus, resulting in the death of two young fledglings. This breeding pair is being moved to the Guadalentín Breeding Centre in Spain, which at a higher altitude will keep these birds safe from the disease.
After being found distressed, wild born male BG 973 or GypHelp, will join the captive-breeding network, as a feather malfunction prevents him from flying, meaning he cannot be released back into the wild. He will have a new home at the Guadalentín Breeding Centre in Spain hopefully pairing with female Rin Ran.
The five birds are now in the van, with David Izquierdo, and on the next step of their journey.
Traveling back to Spain with bearded vultures
We have just 48 hours left to raise the final €1600 of our €7500 target and be able to transport all 19 bearded vultures.
So if you can, please contribute, even if just with €5, which will certainly make you feel good about supporting nature conservation.