The Egyptian vulture (Neophron percnopterus), known as the white vulture because of its snow-white feathers, was used as a symbol of royalty in Egyptian culture, and was protected by the laws of the pharaohs, coupled with its small stature, it was given the name of a tiger's tail - "Pharaoh's Chicken".
Cut ~ who is the chicken
The most tool-friendly bird
They were favored by the Egyptian royal family for a reason — handsome and clever.
As the egyptian vulture's most famous marker of high intelligence: they are very good at using tools – smashing eggs of other large birds with stones to get delicious fresh food. The specific targets for these catapults are ostrich eggs, pelican eggs and flamingo eggs, depending on the location of the vultures on three continents.
You don't have to learn to smash it
Interestingly, tests on captive and wild vultures have shown that this behavior is innate and not learned by observing parents or other partners, and that egg smashing has been carved into DNA like breathing.
Although the use of tools is remarkable, it is still slightly inferior to the brown-necked crows in the crow family—crows are in groups, snooping in the distance, waiting for the eggs to be broken by the vultures, and then collectively besieging the vultures and robbing and robbing them. Well, smarter birds use tools, smarter birds use other birds.
On the other hand, in addition to using pebbles as hammers, Egyptian vultures also rolled up branches and collected wool for nesting. Make their stinky nests fluffy and comfortable.
Well? Stinky nest? Yes, they use fish bones, animal skins, and human, animal feces to build their nests.
Once, it was widely distributed in the Iberian Peninsula, North Africa and India, and there are records of discoveries on the mainland.
Their presence is also integrated into cultures everywhere, for example, in a famous temple in India (Thirukalukundram Temple), famous for the myth of a pair of white vultures , a pair of sacred birds that are said to have visited the temple "for hundreds of years".
In fact, these birds are fed in temples, passed down from generation to generation, and fly out before noon every day to feed on rice, wheat, ghee and sugar. Although usually punctual, if these birds do not appear, the temple will tell visitors that there are "sinners" in the crowd ...
Although the existence of the white vulture has a long history, unfortunately, the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) declared the species a globally endangered species in 2007.
In India, the population of white vultures has plummeted abruptly – birds are poisoned by carcasses of livestock mixed with diclofenac (present in veterinary medicine); In Europe, the number of white vultures also takes a toll due to waste contamination and poisoning; In Africa, they have also become less common due to the increasing scarcity of large wild ungulates, among other factors. All over the world, their eggs are softened by the presence of pesticides...
A piece of the Promised Land of Eden
On Socotra Island, however, the gregarious Egyptian vultures are a big highlight in the global story of species conservation.
Located in yemeni waters at the mouth of the Gulf of Aden, this island is highly biodiverse and has a very different scenery than the world we are familiar with. Socotra is home to about 50,000 people, and their tolerant approach to nature allows the Egyptian vulture to flourish here.
Not like the landscape on Earth
On the island, Egyptian vultures stand in rows on walls and garbage heaps around the towns of Hadipo and Karancia; They remind the shepherd of the birth and death of the flock; They gather around wedding celebrations and picnics, they are completely afraid of people, and they are more than happy to dine with humans.
Vulture & Dragon's Blood Tree
Considered by many to be the most beautiful of the vulture species, the Egyptian vultures are naturally snow-white with their striking feathers and "makeup" on themselves – the feathers on the head, neck, back and chest of the vultures are dyed gold to orange by the iron in their preferred laterite. Especially in Socotra, vultures are as bright as flames.
The vultures here are as bright as flames
Write at the end
Egyptian vultures are so common on the island, with nearly 3,000 in number, endangered all over the world, why are they doing well here?
Here in Socotra, first of all, the unusually healthy vulture population benefits from local agriculture that does not use any pesticides, and the island's livestock do not use diclofenac-containing drugs.
Second, the abundance of caves and hidden rock walls between cliffs, rocks and mountains provide enough real estate for them to nest smoothly.
And most importantly, there is still a reciprocal relationship between the people here and the vultures.
The large breeding of vultures on the island first originated with settlers 3,000 years ago, when large livestock were introduced to the island, and thousands of years later, even today, these birds still play a huge role in local waste disposal. Every year, the island produces decaying organic waste – from cadavers to feces – vultures are responsible for decomposing and wiping out nearly 1/3 of them.
Schools on the island teach children to respect the birds, tell their stories and jokes, and affectionately call them "Suedu soeydu," which literally means "trash cans."
Whatever the name, this is the story of an endangered species living in the last garden of Eden.
The author thanks you for your attention (¬_¬)