The activities of the schools that adopted Thrace's Egyptian Vultures continued for a second year. During the school year that ended in June of 2014 approximately 100 school students from 5 schools of the prefectures of Evros and Rodopi, embraced this endangered species. All the activities were carried out with the assistance of the Environmental Education Centers of Soufli and Maronias-Sapon.
This year the activities emphasized on the grave issue of poisoned bait use in the region. After discussing with the adoption team the characteristics of the issue in the country and the consecutive impacts on wildlife and more specifically on the Egyptian Vulture we decided that the cardinal activity of this year would be to build and place signs. The goal would be twofold: on the one hand to directly prevent poisoned bait use, on the other to inform locals. The wood we used was offered by the wood processing industry AKRITAS S.A.
In the prefecture of Rodopi, as in the first year of these activities, the role of the adopters was assumed by a group of students from Iasmo's Highschool, regarding the Egyptian Vulture pair nesting at the tracean meteora and two classes (D1 & E1) of Sapes Primary School, regarding the pair nesting at the vicinity of N. Santa.
This year before commencing our activities for protecting the species the adoption team of Iasmo's Highschool paid us a visit in Dadia. We walked the paths of Dadia's forest, we had an opportunity to watch the Egyptian Vulture at the feeding site, we played games, and we put the final touch on the signs, before they where transported to Iasmos. There they where decorated with the imagination, creativity and artistic aptitude of the students. In the end four signs were covered with slogans and images regarding the importance and uniqueness of the Egyptian vulture, as well as the threat of its extinction when someone decides to use poisoned baits. Together with the group we climbed the dusty path that leads to the nest of the pair and with the help of the two people that this year have been our eyes in the area, we placed the signs along the road.
The students of the adoption team from Sapes Primary School kept the tradition. With their shouts and singing they managed to stir things for yet another year in the town of Sapes! Starting from their school yard they walked the main streets of their town, until reaching the Town Hall in front of which they reenacted the problem Egyptian Vultures face due to the poisoned baits. Next we were transported to the point facing the nest of the Egyptian Vultures in N. Santa. Everyone had the opportunity to see it through the help of telescope. In the end, while following the road network in the area we placed the four signs prepared by the team.
The signs of both teams will stay there, standing, to remind to passers-by and anyone that will possibly try to place in the area poisoned baits that the students of the region are standing side by side with the Egyptian Vulture, in solidarity with the efforts to protect it.