How do vultures find their prey?

Do you know how do vultures find their prey? Any animal that has just died in an area frequented by vultures is soon picked over by a horde of these ugly birds. How can they all arrive at one spot so quickly form the huge areas they patrol? Vultures, of course, are the soaring birds of prey mentioned earlier.

They have excellent eyesight but they examine not only the ground as they glide high in the sky. They also closely watch each other and the decent of any one bird is always noti9ced by at least one other. All the vultures form a wide sea soon swoop down to see what it was that interested the first bird.

How do vultures find their prey

(left) A number of Old World vultures clustered on the carcase of a zebra.
(right) The colorful king Vulture from Mexico and Argentina is the third largest of the New World vultures.

How do vultures find their prey

Vultures have weak beaks and feet adapted for running rather than killing. They have bald faces for the same reason that other birds of prey have naked feet. The sociable Vulture (top) is one of the first to arrive at a carcase and tears off large pieces of flesh. The Egyptian Vulture (bottom) arrives later and its narrower beak is more suitable for picking the bones left by the largest birds.

How big is the Andean Condor? 

The grotesque-looking Andean Condor is one of the tow largest flying birds found today. Almost 4 feet in length, with a wingspan of 10 feet, it weighs up to 28 pounds. The California Condor is similar in size. A bird as big as this requires a lot of food and the Andean Condor has to eat at least a pound of meat a day.

How big is the Andean Condor?

(left) Large vultures spend hours wheeling and soaring in thermals of warm air rising from the ground.
(Right) The naked head of the Andean Condor is suited to poking around a decomposing carcase.

Condolers spend hour after hour gliding effortlessly over enormous areas in search of carrion, although if this is scarce the Andean Condor will attack and kill lambs and calves. It will also came down to feed on stranded animals on the shore, including shale if it lucky enough to find one.

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