Hundreds more vultures found floating in South Florida -- Broad-winged hawk also rescued (PHOTOS)


Wind shear blamed for turkey vulture downing, Fishermen rescue 20-plus birds in Florida Bay, The Keynoter, November 20, 2010:

According to Fish and Wildlife's Sue Schaf, a call came in from the Marathon Wild Bird Rescue that the Twin Tails commercial fishing boat out of Conch Key had spotted "40 to 50 buzzards" in the water roughly 10 miles north of Marathon in the Florida Bay. ...

At least half the birds died, likely on impact according to Marathon Wild Bird Rescue Director Kelly Grinter.

"More than likely what they experienced yesterday was a wind shear or a micro blast. Both of them are conditions favorable for warm thermals to meet cold air and it's a funnel of air when these temps come together and they get pushed down to the ground," she said. ...

Grinter said several of the birds were let go at the ramp, the rest were taken to the rescue. She said three died there, but the rest will be released shortly. The hawk [identified as a broad-winged hawk] is being kept for two weeks as a precautionary measure.

Vultures found dead, Virginia Bowen , November 17, 2010:

A count of 275+ turkey vultures found dead. Every black dot you see is a vulture.

11/17/10 Vultures floating near Sandy Key in FL Keys (Virginia Bowen)

11/17/10 Vultures floating near Sandy Key in FL Keys (Virginia Bowen)

Similar events occurred near this area two weeks ago:

See also: ALL KINDS of sea birds PARALYZED and DEAD near SARASOTA, FL — Doctors raise DISPERSANT… Close by where 173 ppm oil found in sand (VIDEO)

13 comments to Hundreds more vultures found floating in South Florida -- Broad-winged hawk also rescued (PHOTOS)

  • xdrfox

    What happened to the last ones rescued, is there anything about their release back to the wild ?

  • xdrfox

    What were the results of the toxins test ? Or will those results go as the way of the Swans toxins reports ?

  • interesting...

    That's A LOT of dead birds--275?...and Vultures are NOT wimpy, delicate birds. I think they could withstand winds, but not heavy VOC toxins, especially if they were feeding on many poisoned carcasses!... (hello? That's what they do & everyone knows there's been a lot of dead, toxic fish & whales floating around.)

  • KATE

    Yes, they eat rotten fishes or other animals they die. we have to ask ourselves what is diffrent from other years when this never happened. We know the answer here

  • Jean

    Wind speeds for Marathon:

    11/17 highest wind 9 mph from NE
    highest gust 12 mph from NE
    11/16 highest wind 13 mph SE
    highest gust 18 mph S
    http://www.weather.gov/climate/index.php?wfo=key

    I've never seen turkey vultures fall out of the sky under these wind conditions.

  • Coastal Warrior

    The EPA knows why they're dropping from the skies. They are early migratory birds due to the fact their internal thermostats require warmth in order to survive. Maybe the EPA can explain the increased methane releases combined with the dispersant in the airshed over the GOM. They knew there was a problem BEFORE the DW Horizon disaster, and now it's compounded by the VOC's from the oil slicks, the burning, the dispersant and the methane. Turkey vultures are NOT water fowl - they are land dwellers and will travel coastlines...you won't hear too much about the rest of the birds that will "drop" from the skies over the Gulf during the upcoming winter season...If the EPA would do their job and tell the truth, things would be much easier for everyone. In EVERY way.

  • It keeps getting worse and more heartbreaking.

    I believe the Turkey Vultures flew into a cloud of methane gas, and because the wind and breeze are like ribbons in the sky, the birds must have flown into some especially large and long ones.

  • soozla

    This is only one of the "kills" that happened today. No doubt there were others and will be more tomorrow and the next.It's evident they were exposed to something airborne. Methane? Yes

  • premurderedGOM

    Heavy Oil fumes in Orange Beach. Went to doctor and was sick from the smell. "Can't you smell that?" I said. He repled "I don't smell anything". Haven't been out much, but EVERYTIME I go out I smell PESTICIDES. Lots of trees and srubs here on Bayou Chico [pensacola] chemicals hang on them and accumulate. Sometimes the air is heavy but not with humidity. More like the 02 is being sucked out. Methane? You can hear the drone of planes at night recently, think they are spraying again. Remaining birds here [2-3 pelicans] look real skinny and sick. Can't see any life in the water. And EVERYBODY IS SICK AND COUGHING. And Kate, I think you are dead on about the birds.

  • It’s evident they were exposed to something airborne

  • xdrfox

    So where are the test results ? It's been long enough to get returns on them, the first group of buzzards that fell into the waters at least !

  • The keys dodged a real bullet with this one. Let's hope enough lessons were learned from this that we will be able to prevent this kind of thing from happening in the future

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