Thursday, September 22, 2011


.Driving along Porter Road End yesterday, I came across a bunch of Turkey and Black Vultures picking the flesh off what looked like the skeleton of a cow. Most of the Vultures flew off when I stopped but a couple of brave Black Vultures stayed where they were.

It's easy to distinguish between our two Vulture species. Black Vultures have gray/black heads and necks and their plumage is black except for white wing tips.

Turkey Vultures, which are significantly larger, have red faces and they have white feathers all along the trailing edge of their wings.   

The two species have very different flying styles, too. Once they are in the air, Turkey Vultures rarely flap their wings. They don't need to, because they are incredibly good gliders. Black Vultures are less good at gliding and they have to flap their wings frequently to stay aloft or to gain altitude. So if you see a Vulture in flight and it's flapping its wings, you can be pretty sure that it's a Black Vulture.

No comments: