Sunday, June 29, 2014

The Clean-Up Crew

The raccoon was lying dead on the road near our driveway Friday morning.

The clean-up crew arrived Saturday afternoon.

There were 14 in all -- quite a large number for one raccoon.

One worked on the raccoon; four hovered a few feet away; and nine mingled in the driveway.

As I approached with the dogs, the ones in the driveway took flight first, flapping their wings and lumbering into the air. They circled, waiting for me to pass.

Turkey vultures are not graceful flyers, but who am I to criticize? They do the job that none of us want to do.

And then they leave, forgotten about until they are needed again.

As I watched them, I realized I knew little about these birds -- where they nested, if they hung out in groups. So I consulted my favorite bird website, the Cornell Lab of Ornithology All About Birds, to learn more about the birds that came to clean up yesterday afternoon.


  1. They do hang out in groups. A flock of them comes to a woods near my cousin's home in Ohio. They're known to everyone who lives in the general vicinity and looked upon with pride as a local novelty. It's wonderful to see their brooding hulks silhouetted against a dawn sky.

  2. God thought of everything, huh?