Sadness, hope and resilience in Vanoise National Park

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The death of a bearded vulture is always sad to report, but the news of the death of a breeding bearded vulture, just as newly hatched chicks are being reared, was particularly troubling. 

Back in mid-April a male bearded vulture was found dying under a high-voltage line in Valezan, just outside the Parc National de la Vanoise (French Alps) from suspected collision. The bird was quickly transported to a nearby wildlife rehabilitation center, but it did not survive.  Examination also revealed that the bird was part of a breeding pair as an incubating patch was present under the belly. 

Officials from the Vanoise National Park and partner organisations set out to find the other half of the breeding pair in order to assess the condition of the chick and whether an intervention would be required.

The bird was one of the adults of the Peisey-Nancroix couple

After multiple exchanges between partners, it turned out that it was the male of the couple of Peisey-Nancroix, which was being monitored by teams from the Vanoise National Park. The pair’s chick was around a month old and with only one attending adult, was vulnerable to hypothermia and predation by other species during the periods of absence of the remaining parent.

Intervening to save the chick

It was decided by the team from the Vanoise National Park to not only monitor the chick but to intervene to ensure the survival of the young bird by providing food near the nest to limit the time the adult female was away from the chick 

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