CONNECTING SCIENCE WITH WORLDVIEW
For thousands of years, the Andean Condor, the largest flying
bird in the world, has been honoured by the native communities
of South America, who considered it as a sacred link between
humans and God.
Once abundant, this emblematic bird, symbolic linkage of
our cultural past, has regrettably become a conservation
For this reason, in August 1991, the Andean Condor
Conservation Program (PCCA in Spanish) was created, carried
out under the Binational Program framework between Chile
and Argentina, an example of international collaboration that
has successfully managed to reintroduce 163 birds in South America.
Its main objective is to assist in the conservation of this wonderful bird and its majestic ecosystem, all along the Andean Cordillera, to ensure the survival of what is considered the Living Spirit of the Andes.
The usage of radio telemetry and satellite transmission, in conjunction with intense field work, allowed for the creation of a GIS (Geographic Information System) specific for this species under the FBA Intergraph Registered Research Laboratory Programme. Furthermore, a specific software was designed, Decosat, a flight simulator programme that enables us to have a better understanding of their travel patterns. As a result of this modern technology, it is possible to find out the uses they make of the environment, their sleeping nests, flight capacity and preferred habitat, amongst other things. This information is useful at the moment of making decisions that affect the conservation of this majestic bird and the equilibrium of their ecosystem.
Thanks to the participation of the Andes native communities, who knew how to honour and live in harmony with this species for thousands of years, there is a traditional ceremony held before the Condor is released into the wild. They are the ones responsible for giving a prayer in their mother tongue, as a message of respect and veneration for its life so the Spirit of the Andes can again occupy its place in the region.