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September 1, a date to remember of the vultures!
1 September 2012

‘They look like vultures…’ is a sentence commonly pronounced, but have you ever thought about these species’ importance? It is well known by everyone that they eat carcasses of dead animals, but did you know that these animals are extremely important to keep the ecosystem’s health? Actually, by eating dead flesh these animals remove carcasses from the fields, therefore diminishing the risk of spreading diseases. But did you know that many species of vultures are currently threatened? Factors such as habitat loss (including breeding places), unnatural mortality (e.g. poisoning, collision with power lines and wind farms, electrocution) and the reduction of food availability, due to the increase of stabled cattle and sanitary rules of the European Commission that preclude cattle carcasses from remaining in the fields, have contributed to the decline of many of these species’ populations in the past decades. In Portugal, we can find three different species of vultures, especially in the bordering regions with Spain. The most common is the griffon vulture (Gyps fulvus) that is commonly watched in large flocks flying over our fields. Mostly on the northeast, we can also observe the Egyptian vulture (Neophron percnopterus), an endangered species in Portugal, and southerly, the black vulture (Aegypius monachus), which is considered critically endangered and very rare.

To warn people of these and many other issues, some years ago, several environmental organizations created the International Day of Vultures, celebrated tomorrow, on September 1. During this day, all over the world, activities will take place to raise awareness among people about the importance of these species. LPN and its Habitat Lince Abutre LIFE project are no exception! We invite you to visit our website to learn more about one of the rarest vultures of Portugal, the black vulture. Here you will find a lot of information about this fantastic and impressive animal ( and about what our project is doing in the Southeast of Portugal targeting this species’ conservation. You can also learn how to contribute as a volunteer in some of our activities. Another way of helping the black vulture is by giving a donation to LPN (, therefore contributing to the ongoing activities. LPN is a nonprofit non-governmental organization, dependent on projects and donations to carry out its awareness and conservation aims… Thus, all help is welcome. On September 1, remember of the vultures, help us protecting them!