A female Spotted or Rüppell vulture has made Malaga its home, the first such adult African vulture to do so. The news has been welcomed by naturalists and scientists alike as the vulture is in danger of extinction.
The vulture has been named Juanita by researchers from the UMA Faculty of Biology who identified the bird. Believed to be around six years of age, it is understood that she has settled in El Chorro and has already tried to breed with a Griffon Vulture – not something that has been recorded before.
Researchers believe that she has moved to the area as global warming has made the climate more favourable for living and reproducing.
Juanita, who it took months to catch, has had a health check, has been weighed and fitted with a GPS tracker. The latter will enable researchers to follow her movements but also will allow them to keep her safe.
The change in weather may well be a saviour for the species according to the researchers, who point to the dangers faced by Vultures in Africa with the rise in poaching. Illegal hunting on the continent often involves the use of poisons which can be ingested by vultures who typically prey on carcases.
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