For the Birds: Vultures add to spooky scene

Photo by Chris Bosak
Turkey and black vultures perch on the roof of a house in New England, fall 2019.

Savanna and I reached the overlook and watched a bald eagle soaring above a sizable flock of Canada geese. The geese knew they were too big to be a target for the huge bird of prey so they went about their day as usual on the river.

After a few minutes, the bald eagle landed on a half-dead tree along the shoreline and settled in on its perch overlooking the slightly rippling water. Before we left the spot, a gang of blue jays flushed a sharp-shinned hawk out of an evergreen. We tried to follow the small hawk’s path but quickly lost sight of it among the trees growing up from the side of the cliff.

We returned to the car and pulled out of the parking lot, listening as a Carolina wren and late-staying gray catbird sang from the nearby brush.

Then the outing took a creepy turn.

We soon passed a sign for a haunted village in another park nearby. It was midday and the haunted village wasn’t going to open for another week, but we decided Continue reading

Kicking off Vulture Week

Photo by Chris Bosak  A turkey vulture sits on a hill in Danbury, Conn., fall 2017.

Photo by Chris Bosak
A turkey vulture sits on a hill in Danbury, Conn., fall 2017.

It’s Vulture Week — a totally made-up celebration concocted by http://www.BirdsofNewEngland.com — so this week I’ll post photos of New England’s vultures and include some facts and/or stories about these birds.

There are two kinds of vultures in New England: turkey vulture and black vulture. Turkey vultures are one of New England’s largest birds with a wingspan of 67 inches (about 5 and a half feet). Black vultures, which are becoming more common in New England, are slightly smaller with a wing span of 60 inches. (Other wing spans: bald eagle, 80 inches; great blue heron, 72 inches; red-tailed hawk, 49 inches, American robin 17 inches; black-capped chickadee, 8 inches.)

More tomorrow …