The long autumn migration finishes in Africa. The birds prefer to spend the winter months there, as on the Balkan peninsula they are too harsh for them. In early spring the vultures gather their strength and start on the way back. The sites where they gather in Africa are known as “winter homes”; one of the most popular winter homes is south of Sahara, in the Sahel Desert. Here, the Egyptian vultures are amazingly at ease with the humans and can often be seen feeding within village and town boundaries. Roost in groups usually on cliffs or electric poles. they often gather together in groups at places with lots of food – dumpsites and abattoirs.
Photo: Torsten Prohl
The data suggests that the birds from the Balkans spend their winters in Chad. Egyptian vultures can also be seen in Ethiopia and Sudan. The young vultures spend their first year in Africa, near to sites with a plentiful food supply. They come back to the nesting territories when they reach 2, or 3 years of age. Together with the long migration this means that the Egyptian vultures spend half their lives away from their nesting territories. In Africa they face a number of threats - poisoning, risky power lines and human aggression are among them. Undoubtedly this has a negative effect on their survival.
Photo: Ivaylo Damyanov