Turkey Vulture – Cathartes aura – also known as Urubu à tête rouge (French), Vautour (French), Zopilote Aura (Spanish), Aura cabecirroja (Spanish), Aura Gallipavo (Spanish), Kalkoengier (Dutch), Truthahngeier (German), Avvoltoio collorosso (Italian), Kalkongam (Swedish).
A very interesting (and HUGE) bird, the Turkey Vulture is almost shocking when seen “in person.” The size and the look of this bird are quite striking when one is out taking pictures of larks and buntings!
The Turkey Vulture uses its sense of smell to locate carrion. The part of its brain responsible for processing smells is particularly large, compared to other birds. Its heightened ability to detect odors allows it to find dead animals below a forest canopy.
Males and females look similarly (females a bit larger).
The Turkey Vulture is found in Iowa and the Midwest throughout the summer, and can be found in the Southern US (and parts of the southern-most areas of the Midwest) all year long.
Taken with the Canon Digital Rebel XT 350D and a Sigma 70-300mm Lens on July 4, 2007 in Oak Run (Dahinda), Illinois.
Turkey Vulture Cathartes aura Urubu à tête rouge Vautour Zopilote Aura cabecirroja Gallipavo Kalkoengier Truthahngeier Avvoltoio collorosso Kalkongam Canon Digital Rebel XT 350D Sigma 70-300mm Lens Oak Run Dahinda Illinois