Exploring Nature One Step At A Time

Field Notes: Turkey Vultures

Average Adult Weight: 6lbs.
Adult Wingspan: Approx. 6 feet
Scientific Name: Cathartes aura
Eating Habits: Omnivore, will eat both carrion and plants
Nesting: On the Ground (digging an indentation), Caves and or Barnes

I enjoy the unusual beauty of Turkey Vultures!  From the top of their featherless red heads to their strong talon they are a fascinating combination of awkwardness and grace.  Wings spread soaring above the Mountains in Hot Springs National Park alone or in groups they are always a welcome sight.  When I began hiking in Arkansas I would often see them flying high above me as I traveled across Hot Springs Mountain.

Surprisingly my first “close encounter” was within the confines of the Trees along the Hot springs Mountain Trail.  February 25, 2010 New Feathered Friends Turkey Vultures on the Hot Springs Trails “I am starting today’s post not from the beginning as I would do normally. Instead I am Introducing you to two new friends I met while hiking today, a pair of Turkey Vultures. It is the second time I have seen them in the same area perching and on the ground. They nest on the ground and I might have stumbled upon their…”  It was remarkable,  the obstacles they needed to navigate for landing and taking off  seemed too close to allow their wings to fully extend.  It was a rare chance to see a Turkey Vulture pair together within the Trees of Hot Springs Mountain.

My next extended encounter came on November 15, 2010 while I was hiking  the Sunset Trail on Music Mountain. Beautiful Birds of West and Music Mountains “I have discovered why the Turkey Vultures frequently soar above West and Music Mountains. When I first hiked on the Sunset Trail to Music Mountain the foliage was so thick I did not take the upper trail. Today the the trail was nearly clear and I headed up Music Mountain to the cell towers…” It is a blessing to have my new camera as I am able to capture the details of their feathers and the beauty of flight.

I hope you will enjoy the beauty of these birds.
Much Love,
Lee

Music Mountain sunset Trail Turkey Vulture

Music Mountain sunset Trail Turkey Vulture

Music Mountain sunset Trail Turkey Vultures

Music Mountain sunset Trail Turkey Vulture

Music Mountain sunset Trail Turkey Vultures

Hot Springs National Park, AR Turkey Vulture #1 In Flight

Hot Springs Mountain Trail, AR Turkey Vulture #1 In Flight

Hot Springs National Park, AR Turkey Vulture #2 Perched

Hot Springs National Park, AR Turkey Vulture #2 Perched

Hot Springs National Park, Arkansas Turkey Vulture No2

Hot Springs Mountain Trail - Turkey Vulture No2

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5 responses

  1. Surely love these big birds. Great photography as usual. Love ur Rick x0x0

    January 15, 2011 at 6:37 pm

  2. Lisa

    I have a story you might enjoy; Going on 3 years ago, my husband brought home an egg that he had found at a home that had burnt. Well, on April 18th, we had a cute but strainge addition to the family. A peachish/tan colored bird came along, with a black beak and face. Otherwise known as a baby buzzard. We couldn’t find anyone who knew what for us to feed him or anything else. All they would say was take him back to the wooda and let mother nature take care of him. There was no way that was going to happen. We said we had raised alot of other wildlife and we were going to figure something out. We did and now he will be 3 years old in April. He was raised with our bulldog, and now they think they are brothers. He thinks of me as mom I guess. He’s very protective of me and our family. I have a 7 & 13 year old girls and he will play with all of us, he loves to play chase and tug a war, especially with shoestrings. He want fly away, want eat raw meat(it has to be cooked), and he has a cage that is his home and when he gets ready, he puts his self to bed. It truely is amazing. And he don’t like cold weather, he has a heater in his house. I have a video and pics of him and his best friend, his brother playing. It is unreal how they are together. He even knows his name and sometimes he’ll even bark at you. Thanks for letting me know that someone else actually likes vulchers (or in my case, buzzards—Buzzy–my vulchers name). If others would take the time to understand wildlife, and watch them and then realize how amazing they really are and that they are all here for important reasons and that they are truely alot smarter than most people know. Thanks!!!

    January 16, 2011 at 3:17 am

  3. tony c

    Great info and pics as usual !!
    Folks here in Arkansas
    commonly calls these birds
    buzzards.

    January 16, 2011 at 11:15 am

  4. clawso

    Wow. Can we post the Buzzy clips
    & pics.

    Wow on the W. Mtn vulture shots too.

    January 16, 2011 at 6:28 pm

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