Sempach II: February – end of May 2015
Sempach II is the name of the small Bearded Vulture, hatched at the Catalan breeding station Vallcallent on 22nd February. Its Greek grandmother makes it particularly valuable for the reintroduction project. Because with the re-wilding of Sempach II in Central Switzerland in late May, new bloodlines will be introduced to the Bearded Vulture population of the Alps.
Sempach II was raised by Gualay, a male vulture with false imprinting. He was raised by hand and is thus «imprinted» on people. Therefore, it is not possible for Gualay to breed with a female Bearded Vulture. The specialists at Bearded Vulture breeding centres deal with such problematic cases by offering a human «replacement partner». So these Bearded Vultures can be used as nannies in the breeding program and the productivity of the breeding stocks increases. In this way further hand-rearing can be avoided.
These special circumstances made it possible to obtain an exceptionally intimate view into the nursery of Sempach II, because Gualay easily accepted the proximity of his human carer. Unique video recordings of the hatching and of the first weeks of life of Sempach II have resulted: