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So, as I've mentioned more than once before, I have vultures.  I finally got the pictures reduced and uploaded.

Our vultures like to stand at the highest points of the area, getting a good look around (apparently, this also means keeping an eye out for intruders, based on recent events).  We sometimes get to see them keeping watch:

*snort*  They're always funny.  And curious, though cautious - they love to perch on the roof, much to Bob's dismay.  When we're in the sitting room, we sometimes see a vulture swoop up and past the windows really close, and then hear a "thump!" as they land on the roof.

Our babies, who are now gangly teenagers, spend a lot of their day looking at the world from their window.  As you can see, the chicken coop has seen better days, but the vultures love it so much, they've nested in it three years running.  If our internet was a hell of a lot more reliable, I would so set up "vulturecam" inside.

The babies are nothing, if not cautious.  Here, you can see the ring of fluff around their heads; they'll lose that in the next few months.  Right now, it's the only way we can tell the juveniles from the adults, because they're all the same size (well, that and the adults don't almost fall off the tree branches when they try to scratch their heads).

They're still pretty clumsy; it's hilarious watching them try to land somewhere, realize there is no way they're going to make it, and abort at the last second.  They always look slightly abashed.

Finally, the vulture love:

One of the adults almost always ends up sitting with the babies in the window; it's a squeeze, but they all snuggle together.

And then, the parent grooms the babies. 

It's so gentle and loving - if more people saw how caring black vultures are as parents, I'm sure they'd have a much better reputation.  The black vultures spend a lot of time teaching their chicks how to fly, then how to forage for food.  The parent won't stop teaching the babies for at least another couple of months.



( 15 brains — Leave a chunk of brain! )
Jul. 14th, 2011 03:05 am (UTC)
Heart the vultures! Wish I'd could've made the Fourth rather than being face down with jet-lag.
Jul. 14th, 2011 03:30 am (UTC)
love the pics. Thank you for sharing
Jul. 14th, 2011 03:36 am (UTC)
I have enjoyed your vulture posts over the past few years. Thanks for sharing this story with us!
Jul. 14th, 2011 04:34 am (UTC)
I would so watch vulturecam! :)
Jul. 14th, 2011 04:38 am (UTC)
The way you say it, it seems like vultures is a social disease :)
Jul. 14th, 2011 01:23 pm (UTC)
D'awwww. I do love me some vultures.
Jul. 14th, 2011 01:45 pm (UTC)

I think the coop looks artfully rustic! I bet Martha Stewart would spend hours distressing wood to look like that. :D

Love this post. It's like a wee National Geographic article. Thanks for spreading the vulture love.
Jul. 14th, 2011 03:25 pm (UTC)
I would also watch vulturecam, so if you ever do get decent connectivity, it's an excellent idea!
Jul. 14th, 2011 03:27 pm (UTC)
I have enjoyed your posts about the vultures.
They do sound adorable.
Jul. 14th, 2011 04:17 pm (UTC)
Awww, they're so sweet! Thanks for posting the pics!
Jul. 14th, 2011 04:18 pm (UTC)
I love your vultures. How fortunate to be able to observe these wonderful creatures!
Jul. 14th, 2011 04:52 pm (UTC)
Thank you for sharing the pics! Vultures are fascinating. They like to roost in and around the Delaware River in New Hope, and when they line the roof peak of the Bucks County Playhouse, it's like a scene out of "The Birds."

And when I see them close up, I always think of the Skeksis from "The Dark Crystal." :-)
Jul. 14th, 2011 05:19 pm (UTC)
Oh, squee! Thanks for the pictures. It's largely due to your mentioning them that I've realized that they're really a vital link in the chain. And you manage to make them *cute* ;)
Jul. 15th, 2011 02:26 am (UTC)
Awww, thank you so much for the pics :).
Jul. 18th, 2011 02:27 pm (UTC)
Wonderful photos and commentary! We have turkey vultures around here and they're great to see. Love seeing a glimpse into their family life like this, too cool! :o)
( 15 brains — Leave a chunk of brain! )

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