Tuesday, October 3, 2017

California Condors in Grand Canyon

The California Condor is one of the most endangered species on earth. Whilst attending a wedding in Grand Canyon last month, we had the opportunity to search out some of these unique birds.

We saw our first condor soaring below us in the canyon while we were hiking the South Kaibab trail, but it was a distant look. We had closer views of three birds at the Navajo Bridge in Lee's Ferry, Arizona.

California Condor H9

Condor H9 is a nine-year-old female that was raised in captivity in Portland, Oregon and released into the Grand Canyon in 2011.

California Condor P5

Condor P5 is a three-year-old male that was hatched in the Los Angeles Zoo and released into Grand Canyon in 2015.

California Condor P6

Perhaps the most interesting specimen that we saw was Condor P6, a three-year-old bird of unknown sex that was hatched in the wild.

The conservation of California Condors reached its most critical moment in 1987 when the entire remaining population of 22 birds was taken into captivity. A reintroduction program was commenced and the first captive-bred birds were released in California in 1991. Condor releases in Grand Canyon began in 1996 and continue to this day. At last count, there were 276 California Condors known to exist in the wild.

Phainopepla (photo from Nevada)

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Very interesting and great pictures. I hope they can flourish again one day.