European vultures have been thrown a lifeline. Last week, Members of the European Parliament voted to change a law that had banned farmers across the continent from leaving dead livestock in the field, a major source of food for vultures.
The law, created in 2002, required farmers to quickly clear their dead livestock away due to fears over the spread of mad cow disease. The law even required clearing away livestock when they were known to have died from natural causes.
The griffon vulture is found mostly in Southern Europe.
The law had devastating affects on vultures. According to Birdlife International, Griffon vultures in Spain suffered particularly. Vultures have been seen flying hundred of kilometers searching for food, showing up in Germany and Belgium.
“BirdLife has been asking decision makers for a long time to remove this unnecessary threat to some of Europe’s most magnificent birds of prey and we are particularly happy that several Members of the European Parliament as well as Commission officials have taken to heart our plea and worked constructively towards today’s decision,” Ariel Brunner, Senior Agricultural Policy Officer at BirdLife International said.
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