The California condor, a magnificent vulture 2.90 meters wide, had almost disappeared from the earth in the 80s. There were only 22 left in total and it was decided to capture the remaining wild condors and initiate a captive breeding program to save the species.
After several years of effort, their numbers have increased so reintroductions into the wild have begun and the total population stands at over 450. Condors have been released in Arizona and California. Today, thanks to scientists, several hundred of these birds (more in the wild than in captivity) live freely in the American West and a few dozen still live in captivity.