Conserve Wildlife Blog

Three Vultures get a second chance

August 24th, 2020

by: Larissa Smith, CWF Biologist

Juvenile Black vulture at release@Kathy Clark

Three juvenile Black Vultures were released back into the wild at at site in Cumberland County.

This location is the site where several other juvenile eagles were released recently after recovering from various injuries. A feeding station has been set up and stocked every other day with fresh fish to supplement their diet until they are able to hunt on their own. Game cameras set up by ENSP, Kathy Clark show that both eagles and vultures have been visiting the site. One of the first juvenile eagles to be released and banded E/96, makes almost daily visits to the site.

Diane Nickerson Director of the Mercer County Wildlife Center was caring for three Black Vulture juveniles 3.5 to 4 months old, that were ready for release. It was decided to release them at the feeding station in Cumberland County where they could be around other vultures.

Black vulture nestlings at Mercer Co. Wildlife@ Diane Nickerson

Black vultures do not build nests, they lay their eggs in tree cavities, hollow logs, caves and on the floor of abandoned buildings. Two of the vulture nestlings had been removed from a barn during renovation and dumped in the woods. Luckily a neighbor found them and they arrived at Mercer County Wildlife Center on May 28, 2020. The third nestling came from the Raptor Trust in June.

Vultures are social, they roost, eat and soar in groups. The three juveniles needed to be released where there were other vultures. The nest cams at the feeding site showed that there were plenty of both Turkey and Black vultures, at the feeding site.

Juvenile Black vultures at release@ Kathy Clark

Thank you to Mercer County Wildlife Center and everyone who made this release possible, including the Eagle Project volunteers who have been dropping fish off at the feeding station.

3 Responses to “Three Vultures get a second chance”

  1. Carol Russell says:

    Reading this was a great way to start my Monday morning! Thank you to all of you who participated in this rescue and continue to do so by restocking the food platform!

  2. Barb McKee says:

    I love the remnant down “neck scarves” that they are still wearing! So lucky that these nestlings, which had been “discarded” in the woods, were found and taken to the Wildlife Center to be cared for.

  3. Nancy Lawrence says:

    This is exactly the reason I “check off for wildlife” while filing my NJ taxes every year. The work ENSP and CWF do is so impressive and worthwhile. Thank you for sharing this story!

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