Vultures and Other Scavengers


Turkey Vultures (Cathartes aura) Feeding On Salmon;
Lake Natomas, American River Parkway, Gold River, CA; NOV 2019

In Sacramento, we are privileged to live along the American
River. This mighty river is one of many that provide spawning territory for
salmon. Spawning is the last great act of these creatures; after they spawn,
they die. Though it is the end for them, their death provides nutrients for
plants and other animals. When the Salmon run gets underway, migrating Turkey
Vultures and Gulls arrive and supplement the year-around population and clean
up the carcasses.

Scavenging is not limited to the Salmon carcasses. I’ve also
found a Raven with the carcass of a dead bird. Hunting and killing is not
normal behavior for the Raven so most likely it found the carcass.

Look closely at the rocks among the vultures. Some of what looks like rocks are part of the carcasses.


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