Conducting Vulture Nest Surveys on Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park

The significance of Vultures to the ecosystem is a well-known matter to everybody who has visited considered one of our tasks – spend only a margin of time with our Wildlife ACT displays or managers, and also you’ll hear simply how necessary Vultures are.

Picture by Wildlife ACT Advertising and Media Supervisor, Megan Whittington

As the continued threats to vulture populations proceed, the variety of nesting pairs inside the protected areas round us decline. In an try to grasp the decline higher, annual vulture nest surveys are carried out to watch the breeding success of Vulture nesting pairs which in flip is used to measure the well being of the native vulture populations.

Breeding season for many vulture species monitored in Zululand often lies between June and November – over which era our groups on the bottom begin to be on particular lookout for the pairs in common bushes. With only one egg laid per vulture pair, their problem continues – to make sure profitable rearing and fledging of their one-and-only offspring of the breeding season.

This yr, the Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park Wildlife ACT monitoring groups are absolutely ready to tackle the “ground-truthing” nest survey, complementing the aerial surveys carried out yearly by Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife to help the KZN Vulture Technique. The HiP workforce met with Anel, Wildlife ACT Vulture Programme Supervisor, to do some in-field workshopping to make sure the workforce is well-equipped to conduct profitable vulture nest surveys this yr.

To do these surveys, the groups use the GPS areas acquired from the aerial survey, in addition to native information from HiP workers to scout and assess the nests from the bottom. At every nest, knowledge reminiscent of Nest ID, Location, GPS bearing from the car to nest, Estimated distance from car to nest, Chicken species, Tree species, Habitat kind, any anthropomorphic disturbance and its distance , Any elephant injury, Exercise of the particular nesting vulture, and any images are recorded.

All of this fine-scale knowledge collected from the varied nest websites throughout the breeding clusters, finally assists in figuring out vulture breeding success charges and potential mortality causes. In addition they help by giving worthwhile perception to different necessary data, which can contribute to deliberate analysis tasks, reminiscent of tree choice, Elephant injury and another potential threats.

Want our groups luck this season of vulture nest surveys!

Please take into account supporting the Vulture Conservation Programme HERE.

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