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Black vultures

Fred Wehner found these unexpected visitors, black vultures, earlier this week at the Washington County Grasslands.

FORT EDWARD — Turkey vultures are common around this neck of the woods, but black vultures are not.

So Fred Wehner was a little surprised to see three eating a deer carcass at the Washington County Grasslands in Fort Edward.

Wehner, who manages a popular local Facebook page called, "Fort Edward Magazine," posted the photos on January 9. In a Facebook message he told me he had seen black vultures last November sitting on top of a farm silo near the Durkeetown Church, but otherwise they're pretty rare.

Black vultures are usually southern state residents, according to Cornell's Lab of Ornithology. A range map shows the birds residing as far north as southern Pennsylvania. 

They're a little more grouchy appearing and sounding, too, than turkey vultures. They usually make hissing and grunting noises because they lack a voice box, according to Cornell.

To check out more of the wildlife in Fort Edward, go to Wehner's page at  facebook.com/Fort-Edward-Magazine. For more information about black vultures, go to allaboutbirds.org/guide/Black_Vulture

— Gwendolyn Craig

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Reporter Gwendolyn Craig can be reached at (518) 742-3238 or gcraig@poststar.com. Follow her on Twitter @gwendolynnn1

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