Between the 24th and the 29th of June, 2018, Dr. Alejandro Suaréz spent a week at the CERM Endangered Raptor Centre, in southern Tuscany, in order to learn about egg incubating and chick rearing techniques.
Dr. Suaréz is responsible for a pair of Egyptian vultures, which are housed at Estación Biológica de la Oliva, on the island of Fuerteventura, a recovery centre run by the Government of the Canary Islands, where he is employed by the public body GESPLAN.
The experience of the personnel at CERM in breeding Egyptian vultures in captivity is second to none, not least because the structure houses the largest stock of captive the birds in the world, managing a large number of breeding pairs and a significant number of eggs and chicks every year.
These small vultures are very difficult to breed in captivity and the number of young that the various centres in Europe manage to rear is extremely limited, which is why many experts also acknowledge the importance of the experience of the personnel at the Centre, and the work they carry out with Egyptian vultures.
This is why the vet from the Canary Islands was so keen to visit CERM during the breeding season; he accompanied Guido Ceccolini and Anna Cenerini as they worked with the birds and was able to witness at first hand the methods used to incubate the eggs, as well as the long and delicate process that leads to hatching, and observe the techniques involved in rearing the chicks. In addition, he also helped with the management of the chicks during the phases when they are introduced to, and adopted by the adult birds.
For his own part, Dr. Suaréz was able to share his extensive knowledge of sexing newly hatched birds and chick rearing techniques with the personnel at CERM.