Black (Cinereous) vulture conservation program

  • Focal species: Black vulture
  • Secondary species: Bearded vulture, Bonelli's eagle, Egyptian vulture, Golden eagle, griffon vulture, short-toed eagle
  • Countries: France
  • Name of organisation: LPO France
  • Support requested:
    contributions for specific items >1000 euro,
    contributions to running of project <1000 euro,
  • Does this project benefit local people through employment and/or capacity building: yes
  • Does this project benefit local people in other ways: The livestock farmers who decide to have their own rendering plot can benefit from a tax reduction for their carcass disposal service. Vultures resume their position as natural renderers. Especially in moutainous areas, many farms have difficult access so vultures are more efficient than the public rendering service. Being an emblematic species, it's also a real tourist attraction and an opportunity for the local tourism industry who can offer activities linked to this specie.

Project Description

This species is registred as “Endangered” on the IUCN French Red List, on the Appendix II of CITES and Annex I of EU Birds Directive. The two main threats to the species are direct mortality caused by humans (either accidentally or deliberately) and decreasing availability of food. The main cause of unnatural death is the use of poisoned baits for carnivorous pest extermination.
This vulture belongs to the scavengers group, it feeds on carcasses, usually the hardest parts.
The Cinereous vulture conservation project in the Massif Central started by a reintroduction program between 1992 and 2004. The current population of Cinereous vulture in the Grands Causses seems to have reached a premature plateau, the team recorded 27 breeding pairs for 2017. The various actions regarding this project and carried out by LPO Grands Causses (technical structure of LPO France) are: home range monitoring (GPS analysis and visual observations), breeding monitoring (checking established breeding pairs and detecting new pairs , the laying date and the juvenile fledging date), demographic monitoring (reading rings and maintaining the species data base), diet study by collecting elements near the nests, ensuring sufficient quantities of local and externally sourced food are available (livestock farms using rendering plots, fallen livestock collection to aliment a vulture feedind station run by LPO Grands Causses team), habitat protection (influence political decisions in terms of protection: creation of SPA-special protection area and other protection status), vigilance and threat management (hunting, poisoning, powerlines and wind turbines…), public awareness through various audiences.

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