Adonis is a young male that was released in 2014 in the Massif Central-Grands Causses, as part of the reintroduction project there – which is continuing unde the LIFE GYPCONNECT framework. Last year Adonis had already wandered in Europe – in June 2015 he left the Causses and flew across France and Belgium to north Germany (as far north as Hamburg), but then returned south and arrived back to the Alps. Its GPS tag then stopped working for several weeks (probably because of a faulty charger), but he was observed once in Switzerland, identified through his markings. Finally, the tag restarted transmitting data in late September, and this showed that Adonis was back to the French Alps, after spending at least two months in the Swiss mountains. On September 29 it reached the Pre-Alps, flying over the Baronnies (Drôme) before settling for a few days in the Vercors. He eventually returned to the Baronnies.
Now, he decided to go northeast – first to Vienna – where a number of VCF volunteers checked on him, then to the Slovakian High Tatras mountains, and then onwards to Poland. He came very close to the Ukrainian border. And then flew up north, and is now in Belarus (see maps)
Flying great distances and exploring new areas is normal for young bearded vultures. To fly all the way to the north is not that common, but it happens every now and then, usually in Spring. This summer bearded vultures have already been seen in Belgium, the UK and Denmark, and Larzac is now in Holland.
The normal home of bearded vultures are the mountainous regions of Europe, Asia and Africa. There they find the perfect conditions for flying, steep walls for breeding & open landscape to search for bones to feed on. Let’s hope Adonis finds the way back to the mountains!