FL Everglades Travel Warning - Fiberglass RV


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Old 12-30-2012, 08:33 AM   #1
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FL Everglades Travel Warning

I justy watched a news clip on GMA about (real) Vultures attacking vehicles and RV's in Everglades National Park. Seems that they are tearing off windshield wipers, are picking at RV roofs, and anything else that appeals to them.

Here is a link to the official NPS warning: Vultures & Visitors - Everglades National Park





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Old 12-30-2012, 09:36 AM   #2
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Its "The Birds" all over again.
maybe.. Hitchcock.. was .. right


I wonder what it is about the rubber components that attract them?
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Old 12-30-2012, 11:12 AM   #3
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It appears that tarping is the recommended method of protecting your trailer. Rubber window gaskets are probably what would attract them on our fiberglass trailers. I wonder if the gravel shield would be good enough protection?
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Old 12-30-2012, 11:53 AM   #4
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Hi: Bob Miller... If you could scrape up some nice road kill it might keep them away from your trailer...for a while!!!
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Old 12-30-2012, 05:10 PM   #5
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It's not just happening in Florida- this has been a big problem in parts of Virginia for years...
Dutch Gap Black Vulture Management.

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Old 12-31-2012, 01:49 PM   #6
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The family that preys together stays together.
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Old 12-31-2012, 01:58 PM   #7
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The family that preys together stays together.
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Old 01-13-2013, 11:25 AM   #8
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Taken near out campsite in Big Bend NP last Easter.

We just returned from a few days in Everglades NP and the vultures were definitely there. I didn't see any vehicle or rv damage but there were warning signs posted throughout the Park. A tent camper a few loops had apparently left food out and the birds were all over his gear and even in his tent.
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Old 01-13-2013, 11:35 AM   #9
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I think there might be a class of rubber softening compound that is aromatic and mimics things that are tasty to vultures. It reminds me of how a couple of our cats treat the plastic-coated older Nikon lens cases like they're catnip. I can't imagine this is all very good for the actual vultures! I also vaguely remember reading a story from New Zealand regarding parakeet like birds or similar, also ripping the rubber bits off cars.

They are interesting birds, very gregarious and clever. And, strikingly handsome! I just processed this shot yesterday from a day out at Bird Rookery Swamp near Immokalee in south florida. With that amazing bill, you can imagine how efficiently they can rip things apart.

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Old 01-13-2013, 11:42 AM   #10
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Beautiful pics!

If anyone knows: Are the various colorations related to difference in the sexes?

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Old 01-13-2013, 11:47 AM   #11
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Beautiful pics!

If anyone knows: Are the various colorations related to difference in the sexes?

Francesca
In the photos in this thread, the first one is a turkey vulture, and the one I posted is a black vulture, two different species of new world vultures. Vultures don't tend to be sexually dimorphic (showing distinct male-female differences) as far as I know, though in a lot of birds of prey, the females are bigger than the males.
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Old 01-13-2013, 12:09 PM   #12
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Jen GREAT photo! How big a zoom where you using??? Last month a spent a better part of a day on a beach in Mexico attempting to get the prefect vulture shoot - didn't manage to get anything that awesome.
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Old 01-13-2013, 12:10 PM   #13
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Thanks, Jen!

So are the rubber-attackers from both species, or is it mostly just the black vultures?


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Old 01-13-2013, 12:19 PM   #14
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Carol: thanks! I did this one with a 200-400 at 400.

Francesca: I haven't seen any likely explanations, but since they're very social birds, I'd guess that the rubber-mischief got started by some black vultures, and they're tending to teach other black vultures in their social groups, less so any turkey vultures that might share the same habitats. Totally guessing here, though.
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Old 01-13-2013, 12:30 PM   #15
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Carol: thanks! I did this one with a 200-400 at 400.

Francesca: I haven't seen any likely explanations, but since they're very social birds, I'd guess that the rubber-mischief got started by some black vultures, and they're tending to teach other black vultures in their social groups, less so any turkey vultures that might share the same habitats. Totally guessing here, though.
Peer pressure- just like with any other "social critters"!

That is really interesting, and makes perfect sense to me, actually...seems like most any scavenger-type bird would just HAVE TO check out anything one of his fellows was picking at.

I'll bet there are tons of scientists trying to find some lack in the bird's diet or environmental crazy-making pathogen or whatever that would explain this "strange craving"...is it possible that the answer is really as simple as the one you propose?

Prolly take about a bazillion dollars worth of research to find out...

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Old 01-13-2013, 12:39 PM   #16
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Thanks, Jen!

So are the rubber-attackers from both species, or is it mostly just the black vultures?


Francesca
From the article in this morning's paper, it appears it is the black vulture that is causing most of the problems. They don't really know why they are doing it, but they don't suspect odor since black vultures have a poor sense of smell. They don't eat the items they strip from the vehicles; just toss them to the side. My guess is they are bored!
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Old 01-13-2013, 01:36 PM   #17
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Could it be this:

Click image for larger version

Name:	hitchcockTheBirds1.jpg
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Old 01-13-2013, 02:35 PM   #18
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Could be...

Say...
Didja ever read the Daphne Du Maurier story that movie was based on? No Hollywood happy-ending there, and certainly an ahead of its time cautionary tale... (Link to PDF copy)

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Old 01-13-2013, 10:18 PM   #19
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this week is python hunting week, The game commish is putting up prize money for the most snakes caught and also the biggest. People buy these things for pets and when they get big enough that they want to eat their kids they take them to the Everglades and let them go wild. The snakes have really upset the eco system in Florida and they want to try to get rid of them. The hunters are allowed to kill them with machetes or shooting them in the head. Big stink about the machete kill tho. About 800 hunters from all over the country are in on it. might be there is no dead racoons, deer or porkers left for the buzzards as the snakes leave no carcass. they are even killing alligators.
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Old 01-13-2013, 10:40 PM   #20
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Man that sounds like the makings of a horror film much more frightening than The Birds....
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