Great Bustard Winter Census | Salonta, Romania

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21 January 2021

We recorded the highest number of Great Bustards in Romania over the past decade: 40 individuals in Salonta, Bihor County.

Great Bustard Winter Census | Salonta, Romania

The winter census is carried out in each bustard populated area within Central Europe (Germany, Austria, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania and Serbia) simultaneously, to avoid the double-counting of the possible "wandering" individuals.  

On 16 January 2021, we counted 40 bustards in Salonta: 10 adult males, 4 immature males and 26 females. This is the highest number that we, "Milvus Group" Association, registered over the past decade in Romania. Across the border, in the area of Mezőgyán, Hungary, our colleagues from Körös–Maros National Park did not observe any bustards. 

The winter counts of the past few years confirm that the Great Bustards of the cross-border population of Salonta-Mezőgyán tend to spend the winter on the outskirts of Salonta. The next census is planned to take place in spring, during the mating season. 

The monitoring programmes (winter census and spring census) are vital tools for the conservation of the Great Bustards and enable us to monitor their numbers, detect and analyse possible population changes and forecast their long-term trends. 

Text and photo credits: “Milvus Group” Association