I do a lot of observation sitting at the rock here in Morro Bay, mostly when falcons are not entertaining me. I move the spotting scope to young gulls and other birds just so I have something to show when people ask to see the falcons.
For the past few weeks, I have been watching Black Turkey Vultures, one in particular. The vultures are here most every day . I have noticed in the past when they arrive a couple of them will do acrobatic displays over one small section of the rock on the skyline where they had a nest site a few years back. They fledged two young.
At this time of year when gulls are nesting all over the rock, it is hard for them to approach the old nest site. They are mobbed by gulls. It’s like flying into a hornets’ nest, but the vulture has a way to combat this. The bird I have been watching comes in high and about 200 yards out goes into a tuck, much like a falcon, and plummets straight into the old nest site with a stream of screaming gulls behind. Once she has landed, they don’t seem to bother her any more. You can’t see her after she lands, but I believe she could be feeding young. “Pure speculation…” ~Bob
Having known Bob for awhile, I believe his observations are right on. Recently, while we were watching young owls, he said that one was getting ready to fly. It did within a few seconds. Through frequent observation, accurate estimates of behavior are quite consistent and accurate. He does this very well. ~Heather