Protecting the black vulture in Palma

CLOSE to 70 volunteers will work towards preserving the Black Vulture in Palma de Mallorca this year.  

Two associations, the Foundation for the Black Vulture’s Conservation (BVCF) and the Wildlife of the Mediterranean Foundation will work together to protect the 160 vultures currently living in an area of around 5,000 hectares in the Tramuntana mountain range.

Black vultures are an iconic species in the area, as Mallorca is the only Mediterranean island where they can be found, thanks in part to the efforts of these associations during the past 30 years.

“In 2014, 17 baby vultures were seen flying around the area, but we also had three pairs which left their nests as they felt threatened by humans,” said head of the foundations, Juanjo Sanchez.

The main concern for experts is the vultures’ development cycle. Baby vultures are born weighing around 200 grams and can only be independent after they have reached around eight kilos.

However, loud noises scare their mothers away, forcing them to leave their nests and their babies, which consequently die.

“Two loud noises would be enough for the mother to fly away,” said Sanchez.

Amongst the volunteers’ duties will be to make sure visitors are aware of the negative impact that their presence has where vulture nests are located and to advise them to take alternative routes.

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