White-rumped vultures perched on a tree in Chitwan National Park, on Monday, March 6, 2017. Photo: THT

CHITWAN:  Six vultures that were bred and raised in captivity in the Vulture Conservation Centre in Kasahara, Chitwan National Park, have been taken to Jatayu Restaurant, an aviary for vultures at Pithauli, Nawalparasi on Sunday.

The vultures were taken to the aviary to help them adjust to living on their own, after which they will be released in the wild.

General Director at the Department of National Park Man Bahadur Khadka, Member Secretary at the Natal Nature Conservation Fund Govinda Gajurel, Chief Executive Officer at the Association of Bird Conservation Nepal Narendra Babu Pradhan, and Acting Chief at the Chitwan National Park Bed Bahadur Khadka together released the birds that were brought in from Chitwan National Park in wooden boxes in the aviary.

Vultures that had not laid eggs in the Vulture Conservation Centre had been brought to the aviary.

A satellite has been installed on the backs of the vultures to keep track of their activities in the aviary.

Assistant Conservation Officer at CNP Narendra Aryal said that the vultures would be released from the aviary after they were determined to have adjusted with living in the wild. Pradhan said that this was the first time that birds bred in captivity were first kept in an aviary before releasing them in the wild.

The government had made plans to release as many as 19 vultures bred in captivity by 2019.

Pradhan said that Nepal and India were among countries that have started the drive to conserve vultures.

Coordinator of the Jatayu Restaurant Management Committee DB Chaudhary said that they buy old and impotent animals, and feed their meat to the vultures after their death. Chaudhary said that as many as 194 vultures lived in the seven different Jatayu Restaurant aviaries in different places in the country.

–  HIMALAYAN NEWS SERVICE

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