Ostrava Zoo is one of the 30+ zoos and animal parks that are collaborating in the bearded vulture captive breeding network, managed by the VCF for the reintroduction of this species to the Alps and to Andalucia. Ostrava has two pairs of bearded vultures, which have produced a total of 8 chicks in the last few years. These have all been released across the Alps (Calfeisental-Switzerland, Vercors-France, Mercantour-France, Argentera-France), and the French Massif Central (Cevennes). These eight birds are part of the 192 released so far, since 1986, in this project – as a result, a wild bearded vulture population has established itself in the Alps, 100 years after it went extinct, and now totals 30 established pairs. The population is increasing, has excellent productivity, and soon the number of wild born birds will surpass the released captive bred ones – this is one of the most spectacular wildlife comebacks in Europe, and we thank Ostrava Zoo – and all the other participating institutions – for this great success.
More recently, the zoo has also sent – for the first time – its first griffon vulture to be released in Bulgaria, in a restocking project led by Green Balkans, which the VCF is also supporting. The aim of this project is to bring back the griffon vulture to the central Balkan Mountains. You can see a nice movie about this here.