I studied breeding ecology of White-rumped Vultures (Gyps bengalensis) in Himachal Pradesh, northern India, 2009–2012. Twenty-four breeding colonies of White-rumped Vultures were found, mainly in the Shahpur, Nurpur, and Kangra regions of Kangra District. In 2011–2012, the colonies contained a total of 102 nests, at which 81 pairs bred successfully. Nest success increased slightly from 56.1% in 2009–2010 to 79.4% in 2011–2012. All the nests of White-rumped Vultures were built in pine trees (Pinus roxburghii), at an average height of 15.4 m. In 2011–2012, approximately 65% of the nests were newly built, possibly indicating a high percentage of intra-colony movements. The number of adult and immature birds counted at the nesting colonies during the breeding season ranged from 13.3–27.3 individuals/colony; the ratio of immatures/adults varied from 0.44–0.97. Disturbance due to human activity and roads is a cause of concern for most of the breeding sites of White-rumped Vultures in Himachal Pradesh.
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Vol. 49 • No. 2