Mating Indian Vultures, Ramadevarabetta

by Dipayan Chakraborty
Dipayan Chakraborty

Chosen as 'Picture of the Week'

The numbers of this critically endangered bird were decimated by Diclofenac poisoning. Ramadevarabetta probably supports the last surviving population of Long-billed or Indian Vultures in South India.

In early February​ 2016​, a few of us from Bangalore went to the Ramanagara rocks to see Shaheen Falcons (Falco peregrinus peregrinator). On our way back, we stopped over at the Ramadevarabetta Vulture Sanctuary. We reached the sanctuary around 11 am and spent 1.5 hours there observing the resident vultures. We saw five Long-billed or Indian Vultures (Gyps indicus) and a lone Egyptian Vulture (Neophron percnopterus).

There were two courting pairs of Indian Vultures, and we saw both pairs mating at their roost high up in the rocks. Hopefully they will be able to raise a family successfully and increase the meagre numbers of this critically endangered bird, whose population has been decimated by Diclofenac poisoning in the past. Ramadevarabetta probably supports the last surviving population of Long-billed or Indian Vultures in South India.

We observed some issues with the sanctuary, including lax security, and hordes of noisy visitors to the temple situated inside. These might disturb the vultures.

About the author

Dipayan Chakraborty

Dipayan is a Bangalore-based birdwatcher and photographer.



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