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Lead remains condors' major obstacle

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U-T San Diego


The San Diego Zoo made conservation history 30 years ago by adopting a California condor chick and raising it at what is now the Safari Park. The known free-ranging population at the time was 22 birds — a number that fell to zero in 1987 when the last wild condor was taken captive in hopes of preventing extinction. Today, pioneering work has boosted the wild condor population to 210 across the Southwest and Baja California. But human threats pose the major obstacle for wild condors to survive without costly intervention by wildlife agencies and nonprofit groups, according to a new journal paper by scientists at the zoo's Institute for Conservation Research.


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