Dozens of griffon vultures with wingspans of up to 2.80 metres were spotted in the south of the Netherlands on Monday. The first sightings were made around lunchtime in Tilburg, IJsendijk and Terneuzen.
A larger group is expected to cross into Zeeland later today. In total, over 100 vultures have been moving north from the Spanish Pyrenees is search of food.
Over 100 were spotted in Belgium this weekend. ‘It is such a kick to see them fly over your head,’ one enthusiastic bird watcher said.
The vultures, which weigh over 7kg, originate in the Spanish Pyrenees and have been driven out by the threat of starvation.
New EU rules have banned farmers from leaving dead sheep out for the birds, forcing them further north in search of food. The Spanish authorities are reportedly putting pressure on the EU to change the rules.
Single or small groups of vultures have been spotted in the Netherlands on occasion, but never such a large group.
Dutchbirding website (photos)
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