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Bearded Vulture Adonis returned to Grands Causses and paired…with another male

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Bearded Vulture Adonis photographed in August (c) Florian Durand

The Bearded Vulture Adonis that carried an impressive trip around Europe and was followed by many bird lovers is back home and paired with another male Bearded Vulture! Adonis was released in 2014 in the Massif Central in the Grands Causses as part of the reintroduction project there – now managed under the LIFE GYPCONNECT project

The travels of Adonis

The male Bearded Vulture Adonis is one of the most famous and most travelled reintroduced Bearded Vultures. In June 2015, he left the Grands Causses and flew across France and Belgium to north Germany (as far north as Hamburg), but then returned south and arrived back to the Swiss and French Alps. Then in 2016, he wandered again in a grand tour of eastern Europe – Slovakia, Poland, Belarus, Ukraine, and Romania. He stayed in Romania in the Carpathian Mountains for some time where he captivated the imagination of Romanian birdwatchers and conservationists, resulting in a local beer company naming one of their limited edition brews after this distinguished bird – cheers to Adonis!

In September 2016, his tag stopped working in Romania, and we lost the trail of Adonis, until December 2016 when he was seen again in Vercors, and then photographed in the Baronnies. Now, his GPS tag restarted to work and is sending data now and then. Recently, he has been observed with company back in the Massif Central! 

Adonis is paired and back home 

Adonis seems to have settled down in the Grands Causses for a while now, but he is not alone. In fact, he is with another reintroduced Bearded Vulture – Layrou. For some time the pair consisting of two males have been brooding in a magnificent area located in the Gorges de la Jonte. Of course, conservationists are impatiently waiting for an adult or subadult female to join the pair to form a trio in the hope that they will be able to breed successfully in the future. They will continue to monitor Adonis for the time being – we wish them the best outcome.

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LIFE GypConnect

Led by the League pour la Protection des Oiseaux (LPO), the LIFE GYPCONNECT project aims to establish a breeding population of Bearded Vultures in the Massif Central and Department of the Drôme. Releasing captive-bred Bearded Vultures into the wild at sites such as the Parc Naturel Régional des Grands Causses,  Parc Naturel Régional des Baronnies Provençales and Parc Naturel Régional du Vercors will create a core population that will connect the two populations of the species in the Alps and Pyrenees. To facilitate movements between the new population and the Alpine and Pyrenean populations the LIFE GYPCONNECT team is creating a network of supplementary feeding stations, and tackling threats such as poisoning, and collision and electrocution with the electricity infrastructure.

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