The majority of patients any vet clinic in the world consists mainly of cats, dogs, various other pets and livestock, but the staff of Clinica Veterinaria della Tuscia in Italy had one special visitor recently. Concerned citizens brought in an odd-looking bird they found stranded in a lake.
They thought it was ill, but it turned out they were holding a real treasure in their hands.
The bird was not sick, it was only rare, so rare in fact, that it was believed to be extinct up until recently and now it’s estimated there are only about 200 of these weird looking creatures in all of Europe. Imagine their surprise!
Because the Northern Bald Ibis was hunted to extinction 400 years ago, Waldrappteam started up a project with the goal of returning this species to places in Europe. As they wrote:
“In the spring of 2013 the worldwide population of free-living Northern Bald Ibises with intact migratory behavior was reduced to one single individual in the Middle East”.
There were couple of these birds living in captivity in two zoos in Austria, so they were bred and the chicks were taught to fly by a human surrogate mother in a paraglider. Amazing, right?
The bird that was brought to the clinic was named Lancelot and since his journey from the lake to Orbetello was interrupted, people at the Clinica Veterinaria della Tuscia called the project operators and he finally arrived to his destination. Nowadays, with dozens of species facing extinction it’s amazing to see one we managed to save in the nick of time.
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