The endangered California condor could return to the wild in the state’s far north coast redwood forests on Tuesday for the first time in more than a century.
Two captive-bred birds were to be Released into Redwood National Park, located about an hour’s drive south of the Oregon border, under a project aimed at restoring the giant vultures to their historic habitat in the Pacific Northwest.
The birds must move into a secure staging area, with access to the outside. Officials would attempt to release the birds again Wednesday if they did not leave by 4 pm.
Authorities said that the birds were last seen in the park around 1892.
Condors can live up to 60 years, and they can fly long distances so their range may extend into many states.
Federal and local fish and wildlife agencies are involved in the restoration project headed by the Yurok tribe, which traditionally has considered the California condor a sacred animal and has been working for years to return the species to the tribe’s ancestral territory.