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Black Vulture

Fact File

Continent: South America
Habitat: Open lowlands, fields, desert and urban areas
Weight and Wingspan: 1.8kg, 1.45m



Diet: Carnivore (Eats Meat)
Gestation: 39 days


Conservation Status: Low Concern

Black Vulture

Coragyps atratus

Black Vultures are New World Vultures, with black skin and plumage, except the wingtips, which are white underneath. They also have pale greyish-white legs.

They are highly social, forming flocks to forage and roosting in large groups with several hundred other vultures.

They are classified as “Least Concern” by IUCN, meaning they have high population levels. However, like other scavenging birds, they have been highly affected by lead toxicity. This most commonly occurs when carcasses contain lead due to hunters using lead bullets or buckshot. If the contaminated meat is not removed or covered properly, scavengers may eat it and suffer severe illness or death.

Habitat: Prefer open habitat and avoid dense forests as much as possible. Found in lowlands with adjacent highlands, open fields, desert terrain and urban areas.

Vital Statistics:
–Average weight: 1.8kg
–Average length: 145cm

Life Expectancy:
In the wild up to: 10 years
In captivity up to: 30 years

Diet: Like other vultures they are scavengers, feeding on animal carcasses.

Distribution: Resident in tropical and warm temperate areas from southern Canada to southern South America, including the continental United States.

How we are Protecting Wild Animals
Once a common sight, local vultures and penguins have suffered from centuries of habitat loss, persecution, food loss and nest destruction.

We are working in an area of North West Peru in the Illescas Reserve. It is home to many threatened birds, including Andean condors, sever types of vulture, and the endangered Humboldt Penguin.

Human activity in the area has resulted in habitat destruction and pollution, with many of the local birds also being threatened by poaching and overfishing. Without areas to nest in and food to eat, wild populations were dropping at alarming rates.

The APCPP protects the beaches from human disruption, and patrols the coastline to prevent illegal fishing. We also rescue and rehabilitate penguins to be released into the wild, and set up feeding stations to ensure the survival of these species. The APCPP is solely funded by Safari Zoo Nature Foundation.

Safari Zoo Animals Protected by This Project

Other Wild Animals Protected by This Project