Visitors Can Watch Release Of California Condors

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Come witness a rare and spectacular sight that few places outside Arizona can offer: the release into the wild of endangered California condors.

The public is invited to attend the 14th annual release on Saturday, March 7 at 11 a.m. when four condors will be released at the Vermilion Cliffs National Monument.

“It’s always a thrill to add more individuals to this growing flock, as well as to see them producing young successfully on their own in the wild,” says Chris Parish, condor field project supervisor with The Peregrine Fund, the group releasing the birds.

Of the birds to be released, one was hatched and reared at The Peregrine Fund’s World Center for Birds of Prey in Idaho, and the other three originated from the Oregon Zoo’s captive breeding program.

“Arizona is privileged to be home to one of only three wild California condor populations in the world, so residents and visitors to our state have a unique opportunity to watch this release,” says Kathy Sullivan, a condor biologist with the Arizona Game and Fish Department.

“The public gets really into the release, waiting for the birds to come out and trying to subliminally encourage them to take that first flight out of the holding pen.”

To view the condor release, drive north on Highway 89 out of Flagstaff. Turn left (west) onto Highway 89A toward Jacob Lake and the North Rim of the Grand Canyon. Drive about 25 miles past Marble Canyon until you turn right onto House Rock Valley Road (BLM Road 1065).

Travel about three miles to a shaded viewing area on the right. On top of the cliffs to your east will be the location where the condors are released.

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