It is a very encouraging start into this year’s bearded vulture Alpine breeding season, with a record number of occupied territories and many new couples in formation.
During this winter, a total of 37 breeding pairs/trios have been observed nesting, and 28 clutches have already officially been recorded. Of these, 8 are new pairs recently established in the French, Italian and Swiss Alps. Moreover, other preliminary reports hint to possibly 3 additional newly colonized territories, 1 in the Eastern Alps (Austria) and 2 in the South-Western Alps, one of which is probably composed by sub-adult birds. If this information is confirmed, it would raise the total number of breeding units in the Alps to 39. This is the highest number of reproductive birds since the reintroduction of the Bearded Vultures in the Alps, and makes us hope for a season at least as productive as last year. See here>>
In the winter of 2014/2015 a total of 33 pairs/triplets in reproductive age have been observed nesting and resulted in the record number of 20 fledglings. Of last year’s breeding pairs two are unfortunately not breeding this year. One of these cases was recorded in the North-Western Italian Alps where the couple interrupted the nesting activity probably due to disturbance by military exercise, whereas the second case was observed in the Austrian Eastern Alps where one bird disappeared.
We will keep you posted!