Europe and Central Asia

Art and creativity to support nature conservation in Bulgaria

By BirdLife Europe, 3 Sep 2013

The Egyptian Vulture is the leading character of the new graffiti drawn on a wall of a school in Haskovo, Bulgaria. The idea of making this mural painting came from the BSPB (BirdLife Bulgaria), aiming to use contemporary art and creativity to better catch public attention over the LIFE+ project “The Return of the Neophron”. The graffiti, made by the crew 140 ideas”, represents the life cycle of the Egyptian Vulture, a globally threatened species (there are only 2,000 pairs left in Europe, and about 80 pairs on the Balkans). The first part of the wall shows a young, inexperienced bird and an egg in a nest symbolising the beginning of life, followed by its very first flight. The third stage of the painting presents the vulture as a passionate, mature traveller bird, while the next part displays an old and wise vulture with deep wrinkles on the face. The project “The Return of the Neophron”, led by BSPB, HOS (BirdLife in Greece), WWF Greece and RSPB (BirdLife in the UK), started in 2011 and will continue till the end of the 2016. During the last two years it has managed to tag 16 juvenile and one adult Egyptian Vulture in Bulgaria, Greece, Macedonia and Albania. The satellite tracking allows the team to collect information about the threats, the wintering grounds and the migration flyways of the tagged birds. The project also provides supplementary feeding to the vultures during the breeding season and cameras in nests reveal the food habits of the Egyptian Vulture. More recently the team started insulating electricity pylons, which can be dangerous for the species. Watch the video from the creation of the graffiti mural. For more information: please contact Emilia Yankova, PR Expert at BSPB.

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