Turkey Vulture (Cathartes aura) Drying Its Wings


This photo was taken a couple of weeks ago on the New Jersey side of the Delaware River, just after dawn. The landowner, a bird enthusiast, recently built this large structure (800 pounds!) as a nesting stand for a pair of osprey that frequent the area, but the osprey haven't used it yet.

As I was marveling at the stand and taking photos of it, this turkey vulture flew right into the frame! Turkey vultures are often seen in this spread-winged stance called the "horaltic pose." It helps dry their wings from the morning dew and also helps warm their bodies.

Post-processing: Shot with the Canon EOS 5D and the Canon 180mm f3.5L lens at 180mm, ISO 100, shutter speed 1/125s, aperture f/14. Curves, color balancing.

Thank you for visiting Durham Township!

-- Kathleen

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