The project « Return of the neophron » in Balkans

To improve survival and return of the Egyptian Vulture in Balkans, the head of the project Stoyan Nikolov emphasize the necessity to better know the life parameters of the species.


Between 1980 and 2013 the population has dropped from 600 to 100 pairs.
The decline is more marked from 1995 in Greece where the population is now the lowest in Balkans.




Black circles – active territories in 2012-2013, grey
circles – territories occupied between 1980-1990, but no longer occupied
in 2012-2013



GPS tracking has shown that the mortality of young is highest during their first migration. The safest road seems to be through Turkey, Lebanon, Israel and Egypt to reach Africa.
Most of the birds trying to cross directly the Mediterranean have a low survival rate.


But the main causes of mortality are associated to human activities :
- Electrocution on power lines in breeding areas
- Hunting
- Poisoning, especially in Greece, leading to widespread mortality of many animals and indirectly vultures eating poisoned carcasses.
In Greece, special brigades with dogs try to prevent the use of poisons and education in schools is carried out.
In 2014 and 2015 safe feeding stations have been settled near 16 nest sites of the species, resulting in a better productivity
Nests have also been guarded during all the reproduction

To download the document Return of Neophron 09 2016.pdf