The annual Zululand Vulture tagging project is a collaboration between the Endangered Wildlife Trust (EWT) Birds of Prey Working Group, Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife and the Wildlife ACT Fund. Together this team visits various Vulture nesting sites within Mkhuze Game Reserve, Zimanga Game Reserve, Pongola Game Reserve and Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park (HiP), to tag unfledged Vulture chicks with patagial (wing) tags. These visible tags allow for the collection of valuable data, including the monitoring of breeding success, foraging distances, population estimates, chick survival rates, etc. Last year a total of three Lappetfaced and four Whitebacked Vulture chicks were successfully tagged. More than 50 Vultures have been tagged in Mkhuze, Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park and Pongola since 2005.
This year’s project began today, with a 10-week old Lappet-faced Vulture chick and a similarly aged Whitebacked Vulture chick successfully tagged this morning in Mkhuze Game Reserve.
Wildlife ACT conservation volunteers present: Selina Daniels, Sarya Fark, Christiana Wüthrich and Kamila Wisniewska. The team will tag as many chicks as possible over the next few days.
Photos and text: Bronwen Kelly
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