Israeli ornithologists with the support of the military reared nestling Griffon vultures using the quadcopter. A young bird from the nest to the North of the country lost their mother and father’s effort was not enough for its cultivation. Thanks to fertilizing with drone chick managed to fledge several days ago, he left the nest. As reports the newspaper “Haaretz”, this is the first case of successful breeding of their birds of prey with the help of a drone.
Large populations of carrion birds are declining around the world. Blame human activity: vultures, vultures, vultures and condors perish from collisions with turbines and power lines, victims of accidental and intentional poisoning as well as fire back for the sake of using body parts in traditional medicine.
Griffon vulture (gyps fulvus fulvus), common in Eurasia and in the Northern and North-Eastern Africa, is not yet globally threatened species. However, in some parts of the habitat of these birds is becoming smaller. To turn this worrying trend, ornithologists from different countries take decisive action. For example, in Israel the well-being of vultures tracked with the help of online cameras on the nests, which administers the “birds of Prey”live.
With cameras ornithologists can in detail study the nesting behaviour of Griffon vultures and identify the factors that threaten their well-being. Broadcast with some jacks available for simple users, so they too can observe the life of birds.
The twelfth of March 2020 one of the cameras recorded the appearance of a vulture chick in the nest in the North of Israel. Parents are regularly fed with it, however in early June, the female died on the power lines. The remaining male did not quit the chick, but alone he could not provide it with sufficient amount of food.
Ornithologists from the Department of nature protection and national parks of Israel decided to help the single father and offered to feed the chick using the quadcopter. Equipment for the project was provided by the company XTEND, and control of the drone was taken by the staff of special forces of the Israel defense forces (IDF).
Drone every two to four days was brought to the nest food enriched with vitamins and dietary supplements (his prepared Necevski zoo), and left him on the ledge. Chick was not afraid of the device and ate sacrificed meat, which helped to compensate for the lack of a real mother. Joint action by professionals and SIPA-father secured the young bird a complete diet. This is the first successful project for the fledging birds of prey with a drone. Ornithologists say that this approach is preferable to taking the bird out of the nest and its cultivation in captivity.
In the video below you can see a fragment of a broadcast from the nest of vultures, including feeding from a drone. The device image is blurred (apparently at the request of the military), but we can assume that for feeding the drone was used on the platform SKYLORD. In the second half of the record in addition to Griffon vultures appear the vultures (Neophron percnopterus) that try to steal food from the chick.
July 26, at the age of 136 days and 52 days after the death of the mother, a fully-fledged nestling left the nest. Over the next months, he must learn to find food on their own and avoid hazards. According to scientists, artificial feeding significantly increased the chances of survival of this species. This must be an important contribution to the preservation of the Israeli population of Eurasian Griffon-vultures.
Sometimes for rescue of rare species of the bird watchers have themselves to wear bird costumes. However, this is not the only situation in which people pretend to be birds. To learn more about this theme, you can from our test of “Playing bird”.
Sergey Knee High