A three-day workshop called by the IUCN Vulture Specialist Group (VSG) and hosted 20-22 August by the International Centre for Birds of Prey, Newent UK successfully brought together 15 of the world’s leading tagging experts, from nine countries, plus a further ten vulture experts including from South Asia. There were key presentations by Dr Rory Wilson on accelerometry and Dr Neil Forbes on veterinary aspects and handling. But the gathering focused mainly on the practical demonstrations by the experts on live birds, describing and documenting their techniques and tips, seeking to highlight and exchange ideas for best practice for at least six of the eleven attachment designs that we are collectively aware of.
This unique gathering was the first ever meeting to be held under the auspices of the Vulture Specialist Group, and it is planned that the outputs will be shared freely on the VSG website (shortly to be launched) and in the journal ‘Vulture News’. It was the result of careful planning by Jemima Parry-Jones and Rhys Green, and was a recognised need from the last SAVE meeting.The RSPB provided almost half the funding, the other half coming from Global Wildlife Conservation support to IUCN’s Species Survival Commission, and a combination of the six tracking companies who also attended. Special thanks also to Jemima and her staff at ICBP for hosting us.
The resulting practical guide on harnessing techniques can be found here.