Tuesday, April 22, 2008

My Visitors

I'm new to this world of blogging so I thought I'd start with a little story about yesterday afternoon. I was sitting in front of my computer and heard a strange hissing noise (sounded like someone using a can of spray paint) so I think, maybe my husband is home from work early and outback painting something? I got up and looked out the window, there on top of our shed were these two enormous birds who were mating. I quickly grabbed my camera and ran to the back door to get some video.
When I got to the door the birds were sitting side be side just soaking up some sun and looking around. I took a couple minutes of video before they flew away and started to think about what kind of birds they may have been. Suddenly Turkey Vulture popped into my head. I thought, could it really be a Vulture? I've never seen one that close. I've lived in and around this area my whole life and this is the first time I've seen one let alone two up close.
So I go to Wikipedia and look up Turkey Vultures and found my answer.

Yes, they were Turkey Vultures, also known as Cathartes aura.
Everyone has different opinions about Turkey Vultures and most of them are not good. They are related the the Black Vultures, they eat road kill, and they live in large community groups. They lack vocal ability not having a syrinx, which is the vocal organ in birds. Therefore they make grunting and hissing noises (which would explain what I was hearing).

So here's the video, it's not the best video ever but I was trying to get outside without being noticed.

For more info about these birds you can go here:

There is more to these birds than I thought after reading about them on Wikipedia.

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