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By all accounts, Dasan and Illika should have died of poisoning.Then Illika, an older female condor, was found just 200 meters from that spot, showing the same symptoms of poisoning -- which may have been intentional.The Andean condor, one of the biggest birds in the world with a wingspan of up to 3.2 meters and a weight of 9-15 kilograms, is considered to be in critical danger of extinction in Colombia, a nation that has adopted the predator as its national symbol.Experts say there are only about 150 Andean condors left in all of Colombia, where there is no official count of the birds.Condors typically only feed on dead animals, but it appears some have taken to attacking live prey, according to residents of Cerrito.At least 30 condors soar over the Cerrito area, according to Fausto Saenz, scientific director for the Neotropical Foundation.Poisoning is the top threat to condors in Colombia.About 100 people showed up at the spot where Dasan and Illika were found ill to watch the two majestic birds return to the wild.It depicts a condor and bears the message: "The paramo lives on" -- a warm welcome to those courageous enough to climb this far.
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