Protecting the California Condor in Boise, Idaho
Water is essential to all life on Earth and our water source ultimately depends on the sound functioning of ecosystems. As a water services provider, we have a responsibility to manage water in a sustainable manner and to make sure our activities do not negatively impact the environment and the living organisms within it.
In Idaho, where SUEZ is the drinking water provider for the City of Boise and the surrounding area, the necessity to do our job without disturbing the natural environment is critical. One of the wells in the system, called the “Raptor Well,” is located within yards of a California Condor breeding barn, at the World Center for Birds of Prey. The California Condor is one of the world’s rarest birds with only a little over 400 specimens currently living. This majestic raptor can weight up to 26 pounds and have a wingspan as wide as 9.8 feet, making it the largest North American land bird! Despite its impressive size, this bird is critically endangered. As a result of poaching, lead poisoning and habitat destruction throughout the 19th and 20th centuries, the once strong population of raptors plummeted to only 22 specimens in 1982. As extinction was looming, a large conservation effort began in the late 1980’s, to reestablish self-sustaining populations of California Condors. The World Center for Birds of Prey (managed by the Peregrine Fund), is today one of the four facilities breeding condors across the United States.
SUEZ and The World Center For Birds Of Prey: A Strong Partnership
In support of the Center’s conservation efforts, we have our Boise employees attend a biodiversity training session, where they are taught the importance of protecting wildlife and more specifically the California Condor. SUEZ management maintains close contact with the Center’s staff, keeping them informed of any scheduled operations at the nearby well. Whenever possible, operations which could impact the Center are scheduled around nesting season.
Our employees are also given special instructions regarding maintenance at the Raptor Well, such as keeping noise levels to a minimum and paying close attention to the Center’s staff advice.
SUEZ strives to provide drinking water services to its customers while minimally impacting the surrounding environment. We are proud to partner with the World Center for Birds of Prey, supporting the great conservation work the Peregrine Fund is undertaking to save one of our nation’s most magnificent birds.