Economic analysis of feeding stations as a means to preserve an endangered species: The case of Griffon Vulture (Gyps fulvus) in Israel

Nir Becker, Yael Choresh, Ofer Bahat, Moshe Inbar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In this study we used the Travel Cost (TCM) and Contingent Valuation Methods (CVM) to estimate the value of an endangered species. We also determined the break even point in the allocation of funds targeted at protection at the regional level and performed a cost benefit analysis of conservation efforts on a national level. The Griffon Vulture, Gyps fulvus, was the animal tested in our case study in Israel. The Griffon Vulture is an endangered species whose protection is crucial in maintaining the natural ecosystem but whose protection is quite costly. We used TCM at two nature reserves in Israel: Gamla Nature Reserve in the Golan Heights; and Hai-Bar Nature Reserve on Mount Carmel. CVM was implemented at both sites and within a sample of the general population. TCM results showed an economic benefit of 2.4 M. USD per year at Hai-Bar and of 2.94 M. USD per year at Gamla. CVM results showed a willingness to pay (WTP) for protecting vultures of 2.70 M. USD at Gamla and 0.98 M. USD at Hai-Bar. The value of the marginal vulture was found to be approximately 8500 USD at Gamla and 79,000 USD at Hai-Bar. The cost of protecting vultures was taken from the financial reports of the Israel Nature Reserves and Parks Authority and was found to be 19,000 USD per year. The economic efficiency of feeding stations was examined from two aspects: (1)Break-even point: It was found that in order to be economically efficient, the feeding station should help increase the vulture population by an average of at least 0.24 individuals per year at Hai-Bar and by at least 2.20 individuals per year at Gamla.(2)"Porsim Kanaf" project11"Porsim Kanaf" is the major birds of prey conservation project in Israel.: The cost of protecting one vulture according to the budget of the National project was calculated to be 6500 USD per year. It was shown that the project passes a Cost-Benefit test based on the valuation results.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)199-211
Number of pages13
JournalJournal for Nature Conservation
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 2009


  • Cost Benefit Analysis
  • Griffon Vulture
  • Valuation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology
  • Nature and Landscape Conservation


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