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Re: Vulture warm up



Jim wrote:

> No, I don't think we can make that assumption
> -- according to the photos, they are also doing
> it on cloudy days without much radiant heat input
> available to them. Perhaps they are doing it to
> cool off ?

And Kevin wrote:

> Here on the East Coast (Southern Maryland),[snip]
> vultures sit on top of homes and spread there wings
> in the morning sun in order to help dry the dew
> off that has collected on them overnight. I don't
> think it's to regulate their body temperature.

I'm pretty sure my friend said the photos were taken in the morning, so
it's unlikely they were trying to cool off. A date on the photo page says
April 13. If the pix were taken the morning of the 12th, then we did,
indeed, get just a smidgen of moisture the previous night.

Then Dan wrote:

> According to my sources, the TV's body temperature
> lowers by about 6 degrees C at night, so warm-up
> may be part of the component.

Wow! How many other birds can do that? I know hummingbirds can.

> Drying the wings and baking-off bacteria are also
> possibilities. This posture is termed the
> "horaltic pose".

The dictionary defines "horal" as "pertaining to an hour or hours; hourly."
I wonder what they had in mind here... maybe the outstretched wings
reminded someone of a bird imitating a clock face.  ;-)

Unless... they were referring to the Israeli round dance, the "hora." I
could see that, too.

> Anhingas and cormorants often pose in this
> fashion for wing drying.

True! Do any other birds pose with their wings open like this? Are storks
known to do it? Vultures are related to storks, right?

-- DONNA