Scientists document first sighting of this endangered species in Utah

Posted at 2:01 PM, Jul 15, 2014
and last updated 2014-07-15 16:44:38-04

ZION NATIONAL PARK – Biologists said they are thrilled about a recent endangered species find here in Utah.

Fewer than 400 are left and scientists said they got the first glimpse of a baby in our state at Zion National Park.

A California condor chick just hatched in a rock cavity there.

“This is the first documented occurrence of California condors raising a chick in Utah,” Eddie Feltes said, condor project manager with The Peregrine Fund. “This is great news. This pair of condors and their newly hatched chick could be a major step toward California condors reestablishing themselves in southern Utah.”

Fred Armstrong, chief of resource management and research with Zion National Park said these birds are so protected under the Endangered Species Act, officials can’t even say where the nest is located.

Keith Day, regional wildlife biologist for the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, said these condors typically only produce one chick every other year.

Biologists with the Peregrine Fund said they found the nest by following GPS signals from transmitters attached to the chick’s parents.

California condors status report (Peregrine Fund 2012):

– 386 total
– 213 in the wild
Previously only found in Arizona and Idaho