California condors could soon return to Oregon, if all goes as planned

A California condor walks in the Oregon Zoo's Condors of the Columbia habitat. ©Oregon Zoo/ photo by Shervin Hess

PORTLAND, Ore. – Oregon state officials are optimistic the California condor will soon return to the Pacific Northwest. The large bird has not called the region home for more than 100 years.

The California condor is the largest bird in North America. A draft plan compiled by the Yurok Tribe, the National Park Service and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service plans to reintroduce the species into Redwood National Park in northern California.

They expect the bird might then migrate to southern Oregon – part of the condor’s historic range.

The groups plan to meet at the Oregon Zoo January 26 to present the reintroduction plan and ask the public for input.

Recovery efforts are already in progress for the condors in California. The species was seen in the region during the time of Lewis and Clark. It was one of the original animals on the 1973 Endangered Species Act.

The Oregon Zoo has been part of an ongoing condor breeding program. More than 60 chicks have hatched at the zoo’s facility since 2003.

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