The Turkey Vulture’s head, like its namesake, is bald and red. Its plumage is primarily dark brown.
In flight, the undersides of the flight feathers appear silver or white (see photo to right).
Genders appear identical.
The Vulture’s Bald Head:
There is an important purpose to the vulture’s bald head. When the vulture is eating carrion, it must often stick its head inside the carcass to reach the meat. A feathery head would capture unwanted pieces of the vulture’s meal, along with all the bacteria it hosts. After mealtime, the turkey vulture perches in the heat of the sun. Here, whatever has managed to cling to the few bits of fuzz on their head will be baked off once and for all.

25 to 32 inches long, with a wingspan around 6 feet.
Healthy adult Turkey Vultures weigh approximately 6 pounds.


nature, birds, vultures, turkey vulture, birds of prey


  • snapdecisions
    snapdecisionsover 4 years ago

    A great subject , nicely captured Swaby ! , Trev

  • Hey Trevor, you know your comments are very appreciated! Thank you!

    – swaby

  • Brenda Burnett
    Brenda Burnettover 4 years ago

    This is a lovely shot of the Vulture. He is actually pretty here. Nice job. Brenda

  • Wow Brenda Im flattered, thank you so much!

    – swaby

  • WayofWarriors
    WayofWarriorsover 4 years ago


  • Thank you Tony, always!

    – swaby

  • SchwartingSue
    SchwartingSueover 4 years ago

    Wow, excellent capture! That blue sky really shows him off..

  • Ive had many failures with this bird, but she had fun trying!
    Thank you for your oh so kind comment Susan, I always appreciate them!

    – swaby

  • Jon Lees
    Jon Leesover 4 years ago

    Nice Capture Swaby, he’s not going to win any beauty contests!! Hee hee, Jon

  • You always make me laugh! A face only a mother could love Jon!

    Thank you very much for the laugh and the wonderful comment!

    – swaby

  • Christine Oakley
    Christine Oakleyover 4 years ago

    Congratulations on your Feature on 28 May 2010!

    Keep the great work coming!

  • Wow, a happy surprise and very much appreciated! Thank you so much!

    – swaby

  • mamba
    mambaover 4 years ago

    Excellent. Congrats on your feature swaby.

  • Thank you Mamba, kinda alittle surprised about the feature. But you are very awesome and kind and I thank you again!

    – swaby

  • Pamela Phelps
    Pamela Phelpsover 4 years ago

    A regal image!

  • Wow Pamela, thats nice! Thank you very much!

    – swaby

  • CeePhotoArt
    CeePhotoArtover 4 years ago


  • Thank you very much Cee! Always!

    – swaby

  • ImageFocus
    ImageFocusover 4 years ago

    Wonderful capture!

  • Thank you very much! You are very kind!

    – swaby

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