Monday, August 11, 2008

Turkey Vultures Circling

Turkey VulturesWe were driving past the state capital the other day and I noticed a huge number of birds circling around the area. There is some new construction taking place with the city creating new walking paths around the capital grounds. There was a story about the new walking paths on the news last night.

Turkey VulturesPerhaps the reason all these birds are currently circling around the area has something to do with the workmen and construction equipment disturbing the area they have been nesting? I don't know, just a guess. Anyway, driving by the other day, thinking there may be a dead animal in the area, got me thinking about these birds.

Turkey VulturesSo I googled Turkey Vulture and found some interesting stuff I never heard about before. Info there says these birds weigh about six pounds and have a wing span of up to six feet across. From what I can see, these have got to be that big, they're huge!

Turkey VulturesI didn't get an actual count on them because of them moving around so much. It looks as if there are about 15-20 birds in this grouping. Perhaps they're migrating through the area? I can't remember having seen so many together at one time in this area before.

Turkey Vulture close upIn my Google search I went to the Turkey Vulture Society website. I never would have thought there was a Vulture Society. They had lots of interesting info about these birds. For instance, they hardly have to flap their wings when they fly. Rather they launch themselves and glide. According to their website, these birds can glide for up to six hours without having to flap their wings. They gain height by catching thermal air drafts then circle till they find another thermal.

During my search on-line I ran across an article in the Bismarck Tribune dated last week about the Turkey Vultures in town. It said there were 130 nesting on the north side of Bismarck.

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