Poison baits strike in the heart of the last Cinereous vulture colony in the Balkans

11 March 2021

During the days when the cinereous vultures have been starting the incubation in Dadia forest, a severe poison incident took place in close proximity to their breeding sites.

Two Cinereous vultures were discovered owe to a transmitter fitted on a back of one of the birds, then after a WWF Greece dog unit inspection in collaboration with staff from the Management Body of Dadia Forest National Park (MB of Dadia NP) and the Forestry Service of Soufli, one Spotted eagle and one wild cat were detected. The dog detected as well a place with dead insects, few cinereous vulture feathers and remains of a mammal fur. All findings were collected, stored in the MB of Dadia NP facilities and the next day were transported to a public vet for a sampling collection needed for toxicological analysis. An investigation of perpetrators has been started by the Forestry Service.

Image: WWF-Greece

The Cinereous vulture population does not exceed 30-35 pairs, thus the loss of two adult birds might contribute to its significant decrease. The three birds found in this incident increase the long list of victims of the illegal poison bait use in Thrace, where in the last 5 years, other 9 Cinereous vulture, 1 Griffon vulture and 1 Golden eagle were found poisoned.

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