This is the moment a huge Andean condor that was injured in a bullfight as it pecked at a bovine’s back is released back into the wild after a two-year recovery.
The National Forest and Wildlife Service (SERFOR) in Peru said the animal was released in the Ccaccaccollo region of the district of Taray in the province of Calca in the Peruvian region of Cusco.
The condor (Vultur gryphus) was reportedly rescued by the SERFOR before it was going to be part of a bullfight held as part of the national holiday celebrations in the town of Marcapata, in Cusco.
Video Credit: CEN/@SerforPeru
Andean condors are traditionally captured by indigenous communities in Peru and then tied to the back of the bull while the bullfighters, known as “los Maktas”, are fighting in bullfights known in Peru as “Fiesta de Sangre” or “Yawar Fiesta” (Blood Party).
For some communities, the condor represents the indigenous people while the bull represents the Spanish conquerors. The bird usually pecks at the bull’s back ripping pieces of flesh making the bull more nervous and aggressive.
The condors usually return to their natural habitat when the bullfight ends and if they die it’s a sign of bad luck.
The SERFOR reported on its social media profiles that the bird had a considerable injury to its right leg because of a bull ramming it and the condor was temporarily transferred to the Cochahuasi Zoo, in Cusco, which has the appropriate facilities for the treatment and rehabilitation of the species.
After two years and two months of permanent attention and evaluation checking its skills to return to its natural habitat, its release was arranged for an area meets the standards of a local Conservation program launched by the local authorities and SERFOR.
The condor was named ‘Kuntur Marcapata’, referring to the area where it was found, by it carers and it was reportedly released after a “land payment ceremony” in which the representative of the SERFOR in Cusco, Christian Rohner Stornaiuolo, brothers Dante and Omar Chavez Alvarez, representatives from the Cochahuasi Zoo, which housed the condor, and Raul Ten Canseco, President of the USIL Educational Corporation, collaborator of the wildlife rescue centre, participated.
The process of rehabilitation and adaptation to the bird’s natural environment will be monitored thanks to the GPS tracking equipment that was attached to the body, it will be possible to monitor its process of rehabilitation and adaptation to the natural environment, according to the SERFOR.
The Peruvian State, in 2014, issued a law that declares the protection and conservation of the Andean condor of national interest and public need, and approved a national plan for the conservation of the species that promotes the recovery of the bird, in order to reduce the loss of specimens of that species due to unnatural causes, such as hunting, capture and accidental poisoning.
The organisation reminded citizens that the Andean condor is included in the list of species categorised as threatened in the country.
The Andean condor is the largest flying bird in the world by combined measurement of weight and wingspan.
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Story By: Jonathan Macias, Sub-Editor: Joseph Golder, Agency: Central European News
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