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Eastern Turkey Vulture

Cathartes aura septentrionalis

Description:

One of two vultures I spotted near carrion on the road. This one had a particularly vibrant red head and was not much disturbed when I stopped to take pictures.

Habitat:

Turkey Vultures are common around open areas such as roadsides, suburbs, farm fields, countryside, and food sources such as landfills, trash heaps, and construction sites. C. a. septentrionalis is known as the Eastern Turkey Vulture. The Eastern and Western Turkey Vultures differ in tail and wing proportions. It ranges from southeastern Canada south through the eastern United States.

Notes:

Spotted on the road near an uncultivated area next to a mining operation in Kennesaw, GA

No species ID suggestions

3 Comments

suzmonk
suzmonk 5 years ago

Hmm. Interesting thought. I took a quick trip to a couple of websites. They seemed to indicate that the color darkens over time. And the white "warts" around the eyes may also come with age. So maybe it's an older bird? Dunno ... I am certainly no bird expert!

QWMom
QWMom 5 years ago

Because this was back in June, I wondered if they get that color during breeding season??

suzmonk
suzmonk 5 years ago

You're right, QWMom, it does have an especially red head. I always wince a little when I see turkey vultures ... I know it's not so, but they look scalded to me, like that red skin hurts.

Georgia, USA

Lat: 34.02, Long: -84.59

Spotted on Jun 10, 2013
Submitted on Oct 16, 2013

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