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Happy International Vulture Day!

4 Sep

Turkey Vulture at the beach

Happy International Vulture Day (IVAD) 2010.

The most common bird I see when driving around California is the Turkey Vulture.  They sore around in their tippy way over cities and mountains and farmland alike.

In July, we were coming home from our 5 week camping trip and spent our last night along the California coast at a fabulous campground.  We’d explored the cliffs the day before and seen so many birds — osprey, gulls, sparrows, and even turkey vultures.  When I got up in the morning, it was foggy and cold.  This charmer greeted me as I walked out to the cliff edge to look at the water.

Vultures like to warm up their wings before they do much flying which may explain why he (she?) just sat there while I stood so nearby.  I’m zoomed in a bit but still we were surprisingly near to each other.

I’d love to share that we had a communal moment there on the cliffs in the foggy morning but really, I think the vulture was pretending I wasn’t there and hoping I’d go away and leave it alone.

Which, of course, I did.