In the last few weeks, unfavourable weather conditions have repeatedly hampered training with the juvenile Northern Bald Ibises at Binningen airfield, municipality of Hilzingen. In particular, the wind, which often emerged in the morning, has prevented flights of longer distances, as the predicted wind speed was close to the flying speed of the aircraft and the birds, around 45 km/h.
Never before has the breeding season in the Northern Bald Ibis colony of Burghausen in Bavaria been as successful as this year. A total of 23 birds fledged in seven nests, which corresponds to an average of 3.3 juveniles per nest.
In the last few days, two juvenile Northern Bald Ibises fledged in Rümlang, Canton Zurich, on a window ledge of the new Harley-Davidson branch there. Thus, 400 years after these charismatic ibises were exterminated in Europe, the first two juveniles have fledged in the wild in Switzerland.
One of the most impressive pictures of our project was taken during a flight training session on June 21th, which in itself was unsuccessful. On this day, a heavy thunderstorm surprised us when we were on the runway of the Binningen airfield with the 35 juvenile birds and the flying equipment.
In the meantime, all chicks have hatched in the breeding areas. We don’t yet know the total number of chicks exactly, but it is shaping up to be a very good season. In Überlingen there are 16 chicks in six nests, which corresponds to a hatching rate of 2.7 chicks per nest.
The Swiss naturalist Conrad Gessner was still alive to witness the Northern Bald Ibis in Europe and described the birds in detail before they became extinct in Europe at the beginning of the 17th century.
Jane Goodall has been the most prominent friend and supporter of our Northern Bald Ibis project for many years. On May 30th in Sadbury, Canada, there was the world premiere of an IMAX cinema film “Jane Goodall – Reasons for Hope”, which documents Jane Goodall’s close relationship with the Northern Bald Ibis project.
The migrating population of Northern Bals Ibises currently comprises four breeding colonies, three of them north of the Alps and one in Carinthia. 19 breeding pairs are breeding in these colonies this season and the first chicks have already hatched.
Despite continuous rain, the first juvenile bird fledged today at the training camp at Binningen airfield in the municipality of Hilzingen, Baden-Württemberg.
The 16th human-led migration begins. In the last few days, 18 chicks have already been taken from the nests of the breeding colony at Zoo Rosegg in Carinthia.