Photo: © Lybomir Andreev – LUPY


Critically low number of individuals

The Bearded vulture is regionally extinct in the mainland Balkan Peninsula, and it cannot naturally recover, despite improved habitats and positive human attitudes. Nearby populations in the Alps, Turkey, and Crete do not efficiently reproduce and disperse to recolonize the Balkans.

The Cinereous vulture is found in a small, isolated colony in Dadia Forest, Greece, with slow or no population growth. The reintroduction of Cinereous vultures in the Balkan Mountains, Bulgaria, is a promising step, but the population is still too small (around 45 individuals). This project aims to release birds in Bulgaria to expedite the species’ recovery within its historical breeding range.

Combating threat in the project

Release of Bearded Vultures and Cinereous Vultures into the wild in Bulgaria:

  • Start the establishment of a territorial population of Bearded Vultures on the Balkans by releasing 15 captive-bred individuals into the wild in Bulgaria
  • Strengthen and increase the successfully reintroduced Cinereous Vulture population in Bulgaria by releasing in total 70-100 individuals, thus increasing the national population five-fold (6-8 pairs at present) and doubling the Balkan breeding population (36-43 pairs in GR and BG at present)
  • Strategically enlarge the range of Cinereous Vultures and facilitate connection of the different colonies/nucleus, creating a coherent regional network of sites inhabited by the species
  • Increased capacity of the Bulgarian team to handle practical vulture captive breeding and reintroduction
  • Increased capacity of the Romanian team to plan and implement vulture reintroduction programs


You too can help the vultures

„Bearded Vulture LIFE” is co-financed with 80% by the EU programme LIFE and French Bioparc Conservation and Sainte – Croix Biodiversite.
For the remaining 20% we need your help.

Together we can help the restoration and survival of these endangered birds in our skies!