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Posts tagged ‘Turkey Vultures’

White-Tailed Deer, Turkey Vultures, and Western Grebes

White-tailed Deer, Turkey Vultures, and Western Grebes were among the animals and birds that I was watching in the past few days here in my greater community and on the lake where I live.  We have a rather large flock of Vultures that lives in the more undeveloped woodland area of our community here on the beautiful Cumberland Plateau.  These big birds roost together in large pine and hemlock trees in a sparsely developed neighborhood that borders a wildlife management area.  I also came upon three Deer when on a drive to that same forested area of the community.  The Western Grebes are a mystery to me.  I think that these water birds are out of place but I do welcome seeing them.  At first, I was confused as to what kind of bird these were.  I wondered if they were a Yellow Billed Loon, or some type of Cormorant.  Upon reading on the Internet, I have come to believe that no, they are not Loons, and they are not Cormorants, and they are not even Clark’s Grebes.  I believe them to be Western Grebes.  The Western Grebe lives in areas in the Western U.S. and generally is seldom seen here in Cumberland County.   I have been happy to see all of these unique animals and birds!  I took all of these pictures on 12/8/10 and 12/9/10.  By the way, I have been trying out a new camera.  I took the pictures of the Vultures with a Panasonic Lumix FZ40 Model point and shoot digital camera with zoom.  That little camera will be my “Keep it in the car” camera for times when I come across animals or memorable sights while out on drives.  A side note, I am seeing several new and different waterbirds here on the lake in the last several days.  I’ll be posting the pictures here soon.  Please click on the thumbnail version to see the larger picture.  Enjoy!

Buzzards at Falls Creek Falls State Park, Tennessee

Vultures are commonly known as “Buzzards”.  My husband and I took a day trip yesterday to the Falls Creek Falls State Park here in Tennessee.  The park is quite striking in that it has geologic features such as sandstone bluffs and dramatic tall waterfalls.  It is an extremely beautiful park!  At one overlook, we saw a couple of Vultures (Likely Turkey Vultures) soaring in wide sweeping circles in the air.  As time went on, more and more of these huge Vultures came.  I captured a few pictures of six Vultures soaring together way up in the sky.  I bet they were enjoying catching updrafts and just soaring on the winds.  The Vultures are often attracted to carrion or dead animals.  These birds are nature’s clean-up crew.  The reason these over-sized birds have no feathers on their red necks is that they eat the carrion.  I took these pictures on 11/22/10 in the mid-afternoon.  The backdrop for some of the pictures is a huge sandstone and limestone bluff.  I thoroughly enjoyed my visit to the Falls Creek Falls State Park in Tennessee and would highly recommend this park as a day trip or overnight visit.  The park has a campground for trailers and tents and also offers cabins and an inn.  By the way, the falls there are the highest waterfalls East of the Rocky Mountains.  Please click on the thumbnail view to see the larger picture.  Enjoy!

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