Green Balkans at the Annual Bearded Vulture Meeting in Passy, France

Green Balkans at the Annual Bearded Vulture Meeting in Passy, France

Green Balkans had the honor and pleasure to present the plans for the reintroduction of Bearded Vulture in Bulgaria at the Annual meeting of the experts on the species, which took place in 10-12.11. in Passy, France.

The meeting gathered over 130 officials, experts, researchers and scientists from more than 10 countries from Europe and Africa. The event was organized by the Vulture Conservation Foundation (VCF), which a partner of Green Balkans in our long-term programmes for restoring vultures in Bulgaria. ASTERS hosted the event.

The event celebrated 20 years since the first wild-born Bearded Vulture as a result of the reintroduction efforts in the Alps. It was a great pleasure and inspiration to follow the history of the restoration of the species in the area and we can only congratulate the dozens of colleagues, who have contributed to this enormous success!

The meeting reviewed all the reintroduction projects coordinated by the VCF that aim to restore the bearded vulture in Europe, from the Alps (42 breeding pairs in 2017, a new record), to Grands Causses (where we will invest a lot in the years to come to facilitate a bridge population between the Alps and the Pyrenees), and Andalucía (first breeding in the wild in 2015, after extinction in the 1980s!), but we could also hear about the situation of bearded vultures in south Africa, hear the best practice from some great conservation projects happening.

After the extremely interesting presentations, the experts managed to visit one of the nesting sites, as well as observe one of the established territorial pairs of vultures in the area.

Green Balkans presented the plans for reintroduction of Bearded Vulture in Bulgaria, initiated as early as the 90s. After several feasibility studies, the successful restoration of Griffon Vulture, the on-going work with Black Vulture (within the Vultures Back to LIFE14 NAT/BG/649 Project), we hope to start the practical reintroduction efforts around 2019-2020, with the expertise and support of all the colleagues, present at the meeting.

The Wildlife Rescue Centre at Green Balkans - Stara Zagora is a part of the network of specialized centres and zoos, which maintain Bearded Vultures in captivity. Since 1978 the network has managed to “produce” more than 461 young Bearded Vultures, used to restore the population of the species in the Alps and recently in Andalucía. Since 2016 our pair has also contributed with three chicks, one of which is currently flying free in Andalucia, Spain.  

For more information, please contact:
Elena Kmetova-Biro
email:, phone: + 359 885 219 557