Late last year a total of 12 griffon vultures that had entered a wildlife rehabilitation centre managed by the Portuguese organisation RIAS in the Algarve were released back to the wild in Alcaria Ruiva, Mértola, on the Guadiana river valley.
Most of those griffons had been picked up weakened due to malnourishment, while at least one had collided with a large infrastructure and was wounded.
One of those griffons had a white colour ring from France – it turned out it had been ringed in the nest, last summer (2017), in the Grands Causses, and was found weak in Estói, Algarve, on the 18th November. After rehabilitation, he is now free again.
The griffons were marked with wing tags, some facilitated by the VCF and Portuguese conservation organisation LPN – one of them has already been resighted at Serra do Caldeirão in Algarve.
Griffon vultures have increased in western Europe (Portugal, Spain and France), but the last complete census in Iberia last from 2008. This year there will be a new breeding census to estimate the total Iberian breeding population – now estimated at 26,000 pairs.
Photo and Video: RIAS