EXPERIENCE FALCONRY AND FLYING BIRDS OF PREY IN CHESHIRE AT GAUNTLET EAGLE AND VULTURE PARK

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Another year and another October trip down to South Africa for Graham.

He joined the team for 2 more weeks of conservation work with White Backed Vultures, tracking and monitoring the wild population which continues to face serious threats.
The key objective is to locate young White Backed Vultures so they can be tagged to aid future observation and research.
The routine goes something like this.
The first and most important task is to track down a likely looking nest site and establish if there is a chick of the right age inhabiting it. Then the tricky job of climbing the tree and bringing the young vulture down, where it is 'processed'. This mean taking measurements such as size and weight, and a general health check including taking a blood sample. Next they attach large wing tags and a leg ring. The vulture is then returned safely to it's nest and left in peace.
The whole procedure takes a maximum of 15 minutes and Graham and the team have got it down to a fine art.

This visit covered the usual areas where Gauntlet has been working for many years. At Dronfield 58 birds were processed and at Makcarla it was 51, making a total of 109 to add to the hundreds of others from previous years.

Graham and everyone at Gauntlet are very proud of the work we do in Africa and we can't stress enough how much we appreciate all your generous support, without which none of this would be possible.

Here are a few pictures to give you a taste of the African vulture experience.



Flying into Dronfield over Kamfers Dam


Searching trees for nests with vulture chicks


A young vulture is brought down in a large plastic bucket with a sock covering it's eyes to keep it calm


Graham handles the chick in preparation for it being processed


Ready to be put back in the nest with wing tags and tracking fitted


All the details of each vulture are carefully logged


A well deserved beer at the end of the day


Thierry and Marco from Puy du Fou wearing Gauntlet shirts!

© 2014 Gauntlet Birds of Prey Eagle and Vulture Park.