Date: 4/7/18 8:17 pm
From: Sally K. Scheer <winerat...>
Subject: RE: [birders] turkey vultures roost
Oh, George, this should help a lot. I’ll check that before I beard the village manager in his office/den. I can’t believe the residents of Clinton are willing to endure the tactics of dawn and dusk loud noise to get rid of the vultures.



Sure wish I could lure them to our acreage and away from those who do not appreciate their services to cleanliness of the roadways.

Sally



From: George Hammond [mailto:<worldsmith...>]
Sent: Saturday, April 07, 2018 6:51 PM
To: Birders
Subject: Re: [birders] turkey vultures roost



Did a little web searching on repelling and attracting turkey vultures.



Turkey vultures are protected by the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, but that protects the birds themselves, not the roosting sites. I didn’t find anything about roosts being protected.



There used to be a non-profit Turkey Vulture Society. They have apparently closed up shop, but maintain a small web site. Here is their page on discouraging turkey vultures. They say the best thing is a motion-activated sprinkler:

https://turkeyvulturesociety.wordpress.com/quick-facts/discouraging-vultures/



If the birds roosting locations are narrow (railings, roof ridges, particular branches), this pest control company page suggests electrified cables along roost sites (non-lethal) or “bird spikes” - not actually sharp pointed spikes, but vertical metal tabs that are hard to perch on.

http://pestkill.org/birds/turkey-vultures/



Audubon magazine had a substantial article on black vultures in suburbia, with descriptions of USDA efforts to move roosts, in 2008:

http://www.audubon.org/magazine/november-december-2008/vultures-take-over-suburbia



USDA’s National Wildlife Research Center has been studying vultures and vulture management for some time. Here’s a brochure from them with some information:

https://www.aphis.usda.gov/wildlife_damage/nwrc/downloads/vulture%20brochure_FINAL.pdf

Here’s contact information for the Michigan office of their Wildlife Services unit that might be able to help with vultures.



As to attracting them, all I could find is the obvious: put out meat or carcasses for them to eat. Here are a couple of blog posts by birders who did:



http://blog.aba.org/2012/06/feeding-turkey-vultures.html



https://billofthebirds.blogspot.com/2007/10/big-pile-o-meat.html



hope this is useful,



George







On Apr 6, 2018, at 12:40 PM, Sally K. Scheer <winerat...> wrote:



We have Turkey Vultures who roost in a dead tree in our side yard. We LOVE having them there, perched on the very top of the highest dead trunks. We watch them every day.

CLINTON village has a different opinion and I wondered if some of the experts or more experienced bird lovers on this list might have a better solution than they’ve come up with.

Every day at dawn and dusk the Village fires off air horns to disrupt them in their roosts at the Community Center and the cemetery. I think their dawn air horns are useless. From observing our vultures, I think the birds can’t take off before there are thermals for them to ride. Right??

As to the air horns at dusk, I question their effectiveness too. The birds have chosen to roost in these two places because of the availability of appropriate trees and thermals. Is this also correct? Or am I drawing erroneous conclusions?

Here’s the big question: is there a way that will not harm the vultures (our natural cleanup squad) but will urge them to roost elsewhere? For instance, we’d welcome them to our property a mile north of town. Is there a way we could encourage them to move in our direction and leave Clinton? The village is claiming they are making a very big mess in the cemetery and at the community center. I have not checked out the roost myself so I don’t know how much of a mess they have made. I do know that our vultures have not made any visible mess on our property, but we have acreage here.

Sally Scheer

Bridgewater Township just north of Clinton



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