Condor Update - 2011-07 (July)

Hello Condor Enthusiasts-


Here is the latest Condor Chart by Tag Number (Updated October 26, 2011) 95kb pdf file

Population numbers from the US Fish & Wildlife Service, as of May 31, 2011:

World Total: 396

Captive Population (including birds temporarily in captivity): 200

Wild Population: 195

California: 108 (including 6 chicks: 2 in Pinnacles National Monument, 3 in southern California, and one in the Big Sur area)

Baja CA, Mexico: 19 (including one chick)

Arizona/Utah: 71 (counting one confirmed chick, but NOT the two other suspected chicks)


Arizona/Utah news:

The Arizona/Utah number is down three since April 30, due to the death of three condors by lead poisoning this spring. The press release about these deaths came out right after my last update, and may be found at:
http://www.peregrinefund.org/press_full.asp?id=208&category=California+Condor.

From Chris Parish of The Peregrine Fund, as quoted in the press release: "X-rays showed 18 shotgun pellets in the digestive system of one bird and 6 in another. The third had remains of a spent bullet in its system, all suggesting these scavengers died after eating one or more animal carcasses that had been shot." The condors that died were eleven-year-old male 223/3, six-year-old female 367/67, and nine-year-old male 270/70. 223 was the male from the Marble Canyon, Grand Canyon Nationa Park nest with 253F/53 this spring, and his death was the cause of its failure.

On a happier note, this summer for the first time we seem to have THREE condor chicks growing up in nest caves in Arizona! Chick #610 on the east Kaibab plateau, Kaibab National Forest being raised by one female and two males, was first seen on April 22. The other two chicks, growing up in Redwall limestone caves in Grand Canyon National Park, have not yet been seen but almost certainly exist based on the behavior of their parents. These are the Battleship chick of 280F/80 and 234M/4, which likely hatched around May 27, and the Pipe Creek/Yaki Point chick of experienced breeders 133F/33 and 187M/87, which likely hatched around May 10.

Condor Talks take place daily this summer at Lookout Studio on the South Rim of the Grand Canyon at 8:00 a.m. and 3:30 p.m., as well as on the back porch of the Grand Canyon Lodge (North Rim) at 4:30 p.m. At least on the South Rim, condors do sometimes show up for these programs, but no guarantees!


"Condor Cliffs" Facebook page:

The best place to keep up with the latest news about Arizona/Utah condors now has a simple website name, and you do not have to join or sign in to Facebook to visit it. Check out facebook.com/CondorCliffs for some nice California condor photos and video clips, as well as the latest news. Feel free to post your own images, too!

One recent tidbit posted June 27 on the Condor Cliffs page: "With temps holding above 100 for well over a week now, the majority of the condor population has shifted to the higher elevations of the Utah summer range, north of Zion Natl. Park....The summer range covers most of the area north of Zion, and east of Cedar City, UT; more specifically the Cedar Mountain area and all of the adjacent canyons that border it. This area is almost solely private land, so viewing opportunities are very limited. However, the Angel's Landing and Scout Lookout hikes inside Zion Park are great places to see the birds this time of year."


Until I have more news….

Marker
Ms. Marker Marshall
Park Ranger--Interpretation
Grand Canyon National Park

Last updated: February 9, 2017