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Northern Bald Ibis

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A globally rare species breeding only in [[Morocco]] and until recently at a single site in south-east [[Turkey]], still decreasing despite the efforts of conservationists to reverse this decline. The sole remaining Turkish site is close to the border with [[Syria]], although the wild population became extinct here in 1989 and the birds present are free-flying and part of a captive breeding programme. Under strict protection this population produced 19 fledged young in 2001 and 17 in 2002. A globally rare species breeding only in [[Morocco]] and until recently at a single site in south-east [[Turkey]], still decreasing despite the efforts of conservationists to reverse this decline. The sole remaining Turkish site is close to the border with [[Syria]], although the wild population became extinct here in 1989 and the birds present are free-flying and part of a captive breeding programme. Under strict protection this population produced 19 fledged young in 2001 and 17 in 2002.
-These birds are resident but the original wild birds were summer visitors only, wintering in North [[Yemen]] and [[Ethiopia]]. Birds are still occasionally recorded in [[Saudi Arabia]], Yemen and [[Israel]] which has led to the suggestion that there may be another breeding site somewhere in the [[Middle East]] and this was confirmed in 2002. In April of that year a small breeding colony of three pairs was discovered in the mountains of central [[Syria]] and three pairs bred again in 2003.. The [[Morocco|Moroccan]] population is healthier, numbering about 200 birds, but still declining at present and currently under threat from plans for tourist development. These birds are dispersive and may occur throughout [[Morocco]] and [[Mauretania]]. Present at breeding colonies at [[Souss-Massa National Park]] from February-March to August-September.+These birds are resident but the original wild birds were summer visitors only, wintering in North [[Yemen]] and [[Ethiopia]]. Birds are still occasionally recorded in [[Saudi Arabia]], Yemen and [[Israel]] which has led to the suggestion that there may be another breeding site somewhere in the [[Middle East]] and this was confirmed in 2002. In April of that year a small breeding colony of three pairs was discovered in the mountains of central [[Syria]] and three pairs bred again in 2003.. The [[Morocco|Moroccan]] population is healthier, numbering about 200 birds, but still declining at present and currently under threat from plans for tourist development. These birds are dispersive and may occur throughout [[Morocco]] and [[Mauritania]]. Present at breeding colonies at [[Souss-Massa National Park]] from February-March to August-September.
Formerly more widespread in the [[Middle East]] and North [[Africa]] with colonies in Syria and [[Algeria]] and in past centuries also bred in Central [[Europe]]. Formerly more widespread in the [[Middle East]] and North [[Africa]] with colonies in Syria and [[Algeria]] and in past centuries also bred in Central [[Europe]].

Revision as of 21:06, 11 March 2010


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Alternative name: Northern Bald Ibis

Geronticus eremita
Photo by MugilPhoto taken: Postojna, Slovenia
Photo by Mugil
Photo taken: Postojna, Slovenia

Contents

Identification

Large, black, short-legged, long-winged with long tail. Red, down-curved bill. Metallic green, purple-brown gloss. Head bald, skin red. Elongated, drooping nape-feathers. Wing has rather short 'arm' and narrow 'hand'. Feet do not project beyond tail when flying. Wingbeats shallow but flexible and strong.

Distribution

A globally rare species breeding only in Morocco and until recently at a single site in south-east Turkey, still decreasing despite the efforts of conservationists to reverse this decline. The sole remaining Turkish site is close to the border with Syria, although the wild population became extinct here in 1989 and the birds present are free-flying and part of a captive breeding programme. Under strict protection this population produced 19 fledged young in 2001 and 17 in 2002.

These birds are resident but the original wild birds were summer visitors only, wintering in North Yemen and Ethiopia. Birds are still occasionally recorded in Saudi Arabia, Yemen and Israel which has led to the suggestion that there may be another breeding site somewhere in the Middle East and this was confirmed in 2002. In April of that year a small breeding colony of three pairs was discovered in the mountains of central Syria and three pairs bred again in 2003.. The Moroccan population is healthier, numbering about 200 birds, but still declining at present and currently under threat from plans for tourist development. These birds are dispersive and may occur throughout Morocco and Mauritania. Present at breeding colonies at Souss-Massa National Park from February-March to August-September.

Formerly more widespread in the Middle East and North Africa with colonies in Syria and Algeria and in past centuries also bred in Central Europe.

As a vagrant it has been recorded in earlier times from the Azores and Cape Verde Islands, Spain, Israel, Egypt and Iraq. There are plans to reintroduce the Bald Ibis to the Alps.

Re-introduction of N Bald Ibis in southern Andalucia, Spain. Part of a current long-term European project in various countries.

Taxonomy

Habitat

Breeds on rock ledges and caves on cliff-faces and rocky escarpments in arid country or on sea-coasts. Feeds in dry wadis and semi-desert, sometimes along seashores. When not breeding also found in mountain meadows and cultivated land.

Behaviour

Normally silent but when with colony has a gutteral 'hrump' and hoarse, high-pitched 'hyoh'.

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