Vulture chick brings hope

For those of you who follow bird news around the globe, you are probably aware that vulture populations have crashed to an unsustainable level due to the widespread use of the veterinary medicine, diclofenac. Three species of vultures- the White-Rumped Vulture (Gyps bengalensis), Indian Vulture (Gyps indicus) and Slender-billed Vulture (Gyps tenuirostris) declined by more that 95 percent in just three years in the 1990s and their populations have been declining by 22-48% since then. The populations are so low now that the species’ survival depends mainly on captive breeding success.

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Birdlife International just issued a press release that a single White-rumped Vulture chick just hatched at one of the breeding centers. This early success is good news and means that hopefully the captive breeding program can continue at an accelerated rate. Also in the good news column is the fact that diclofenac is being phased out quickly in India and surrounding countries in an attempt to save the remaining wild populations of these birds that were once so common.

Read the press release here.