Vulture Conservation

Project Info

Client Vulture Conservation
Skills February 2016
Website Conservation

Project Description

Catastrophic poisoning events across southern Africa are driving populations of globally threatened vulture species towards extinction. Vultures are a distinctive, iconic and charismatic component of much of the African landscape. They provide critical ecological and ecosystem services, which stem from the birds’ unique way of life. Vultures are ‘obligate scavengers’ – more efficient at cleaning up animal carcasses than most, if not all, other scavengers. To succeed as such obligate scavengers, they must be specialised: vultures can resist bacterial toxins in rotting flesh that would kill other organisms. Poisoning has been directly used for ivory poaching and the scourge of elephant and rhino poaching, currently affecting several SADC countries is the primary source of vulture poisoning, with poachers lacing carcasses with poisonous chemicals to stop the circling birds from giving away the location of a poached animal. This threat respects no international boundaries with catastrophic events taking place in Namibia, Botswana and Zimbabwe where hundreds of vultures have been killed recent years. (Capon.2014; Groom et al., 2013; Muboko et al 2014).

View Full Project Discription >