The Zoo participates in the EEP program for one of the rarest bird species, the northern bald ibis (Geronticus eremita). The global population in the wild is approximately 450-500 individuals with a further 1,200 in captivity. Previously populations living in the Middle East, North Africa and Southern Europe migrated southwards to Africa. The global population is now divided into two groups: the larger western group is situated in Morocco and has around 450 individuals; and the smaller eastern population Syria which has 2-3 breeding pairs. The eastern population was rediscovered in 2002 after it was thought to be extinct, however its current status is unknown. The species was spotted in Israel in the past but the last sighting here was in 2007. Several reintroduction attempts have been made in Europe with zoo-bred individuals, notably in Austria and Spain. In the eighties there was also an attempt to reintroduce individuals hatched at Tel Aviv University into the wild, however this effort was unsuccessful. The Zoo is home to a small group of these birds in the Marsh Aviary which was recently supplemented by some individuals from a closed petting zoo in Abu Kabir.