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Mar 16, 2008

Spring harbinger???

Now here's a face only a mother could love: the Turkey Vulture. I saw one of these huge carrion-eaters fly over the house today. I wondered for a moment if he had heard of my Kidney Stone attack and flew by to see if my body was lying in the ditch at the front of house. Fat chance Mr. Big Beak -- I'm a tougher old bird than you. I haven't seen a Robin yet, this spring, or a Red-winged Blackbird, or a Blue-bird, or any of the other birds that people normally think of as spring harbingers. I have seen lots of Horned Larks, but they come back sometimes in January so they don't really count. No, it the Turkey Vulture that is my first spring migrant of 2008, here in southern Ontario. What's the world coming to? Another manifestation of global warming? Or maybe it's just that road kill occurs anytime of year, even in winter, so there's always a meal available for some intrepid early-bird. Actually, Turkey Vultures have been extending their range northward for some years now, and are becoming more and more common. Ohhh, to be able glide like one of these big black beauties! Photos from Wikipedia- above by Max Waugh, below by Callie Bowdish


Bigwom said...

Not that I don't care about your birds, but could you email us that pic of William and Emmy - that's fantastic

Murray Skinner said...

I've seen these guys in the air many times, but was surprised on the weekend to see one in the snow at the side of the road near the lakehouse. He was guarding a road kill animal while keeping a watchful eye on the passing cars.