Utah Field Guide: California Condor

The California condor is one of our nation’s most magnificent birds, with wings spanning an amazing nine and half feet they can weigh up to 23 pounds.

Condor numbers dramatically declined in the 20th century due to poaching, lead poisoning, and habitat destruction. A conservation plan was put in place that led to the capture of all 22 remaining wild condors in 1987. These surviving birds were bred and numbers rose through captive breeding and beginning in 1991, condors were reintroduced into the wild. The California Condor is one of the world’s rarest bird species: as of 2015, the population counts put the number of known condors at 435, with 226 living in the wild and free-flying in California, Arizona, Utah and Baja California, Mexico.

For more information on the California Condor or any other critter found in Utah, check out our Field Guide on our outdoors page KSLTV.com

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