It was a gray day today with occasional light rain. It was raining when I let the dogs out, glanced up at the big pine tree, and saw a large dark lump in the branches.

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By the time I got the camera and went back outside the door, the lump had moved a little and it was plainly a turkey vulture. Turkey vultures are large birds with a body length of about 26 inches and a wingspan of almost 6 feet. They get their name from their featherless red head, which reminded people of turkeys.

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The turkey vulture is a scavenger and has a bill with a sharply curved tip for pulling apart food. There is no septum separating left and right nasal passages, so the vulture has a opening through its bill.

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The turkey vulture finally turned around.

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