Healthy Food For The Albanian Nature-Cleaning Crew, secured by PPNEA’s Supplementary Feeding Stations

Healthy Food For The Albanian Nature-Cleaning Crew, secured by PPNEA’s Supplementary Feeding Stations
The Egyptian vulture is the last of the four species of European vultures that still breeds in Albania, with less than 10 occupied territories. A recent evaluation of the threats for the species in the country has shown that the use of agricultural chemicals, veterinary medical productselectrocution and collisions with energy infrastructure, and direct persecution have a marginally negative impact, while the major threat for vultures is the use of poison baits due to human-carnivore conflicts. To provide locally predictable and poison-free food for vultures, by the meantime hardly working in close collaboration with the AOSVCF  and relevant authorities to mitigate the problem with poison use at the national level, the PPNEA  has piloted two supplementary feeding stations (SFS) in 2018. Although the SFS were built following the best practices from other Balkans countries, they did not operate efficiently in the first year of their establishment. However, thanks to the expert guidance from the BSPB and the improvement of their management, the situation changed in 2019. Both SFS operated from May to September. The SFS in Glina was supplied with 5 kg meet every second day, while the SFS in Nivica (which access is harder) – with 30 kg of meet once or twice per week. The results did not delay – a pair of Egyptian vultures started to use the SFS in Glina since May. The SFS was provided with a trail camera that allowed monitoring on the frequency of vulture visits and individual recognition of the birds. Later on, during the breeding season, the SFS was visited by a third adult bird from the neighboring territory and also fresh juveniles. The results for the SFS in Nivica are still far from the expectations, but this will be one of the pleasant challenges for PPNEA’s team in 2020. Besides the positive impact of providing Egyptian vultures with predictable and safe source of food, the operation of the SFS can also benefit the local communities. In the Albanian case, both SFS were maintained by local people. They helped for raising the awareness of these endangered birds among the local stakeholders and media, and in the future may provide opportunities for rural and wildlife tourism.
Related Posts
Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.Required fields are marked *