- International Vulture Awareness Day, Saturday 5th September 2015
The first Saturday in September each year is International Vulture Awareness Day. | Vultures are an ecologically vital group of birds that face a range of threats in many areas that they occur. Populations of many species are under pressure and some species are facing extinction. | The International Vulture Awareness Day has grown from Vulture Awareness Days run by the Birds of Prey Programme in South Africa and the Hawk Conservancy Trust in England, who decided to work together and expand the initiative into an international event. | It is now recognised that a co-ordinated international day will publicise the conservation of vultures to a wider audience and highlight the important work being carried out by the world’s vulture conservationists. | On the first Saturday in September, the aim is for each participating organisation to carry out their own activities that highlight vulture conservation and awareness. This website, established in July 2009, provides a central place for all participants to outline these activities and see the extent of vulture conservation across the world. | Additionally this webpage is a valuable resource for vulture workers to learn about the activities of their colleagues and to perhaps develop new collaborations or exchange information.
- Three Cheers for the Amazing Asian Vulture | USFWS Open Spaces Blog 090215
In 2012, [USFWS] funded the establishment of a vulture restaurant in Koshi Tappu Wildlife Reserve in Nepal. | Vulture restaurants don’t serve vulture, they serve carcasses to vultures, and they are an important way to help recover vultures – in Asia, IUCN, the International Union for Conservation of Nature, classifies four species as Critically Endangered. | This is largely due to a drug given to livestock. | In Asian countries, people give diclofenac, a drug similar to aspirin or ibuprofen, to livestock to ease arthritic pain. | But vultures are hyper-sensitive to diclofenac. When they feed on livestock carcasses that had received the drug when they were alive, vultures die. And vulture population numbers have tumbled drastically since the drug came into use. | IUCN says that the white-rumped vulture was at one time called “possibly the most abundant large bird of prey in the world,” adding that its overall population “almost certainly numbered several million individuals.” But since the mid-1990s, IUCN says, “it has suffered a catastrophic decline (over 99%) across the Indian subcontinent,” and IUCN puts the total population now at less than 15,000.
- Male Condor #509 Feeds Nestling FB 090315
Bird Cams What attentive parents! Last evening male parent # 509 returned to the nest site to feed the chick. Check out the impressive shadows of the adult wings when he arrived and the view of the steep valley beyond the nest site.
Keep watching: AllAboutBirds.org/condors
Blue Hole: Little Miami River
What is a village? A small place, yes, as wide as the world, layered with histories and stories, where you can walk wherever you want to go. In my vision of that place, a river like the Little Miami runs through it, and still water like the Blue Hole remains as transcendent as the day in 1851 when Robert Duncanson painted it.
Big Water: Lake SuperiorI’ve canoed on Lake Superior for almost as many years as I’ve been losing eyesight. I return year after year like a migrating loon to learn the other side of a slow, uncertain process that we could call “going blind.” After 35 years with the lake as my teacher, I know what lies on the other side. I call it letting go of sight. Read my essay Big Water.