Cookie arrived to Back to Nature in October 1998. She suffered an injury to her left wing after being hit by a car. It was suspected that she was trying to eat road kill when she was hit. Due to the severity of her injury, Cookie’s wing calcified and healed incorrectly, therefore making her incapable of flight. Because of her physical impairment she was deemed non-releasable and she now serves as an educational ambassador for her species.
*Cookie loves when she is treated with venison.
Facts about The Turkey Vulture
The Turkey Vulture (Cathartes aura), also known in some North American regions as the turkey buzzard, is the most widespread of the New World vultures. One of three species in the genus Cathartes, in the family Cathartidae, the Turkey Vulture ranges from southern Canada to the southernmost tip of South America. It inhabits a variety of open and semi-open areas, including subtropical forests, shrublands, pastures, and deserts.
The Turkey Vulture is a scavenger and feeds almost exclusively on carrion. It finds its food using its keen eyes and sense of smell. It roosts in large community groups. Lacking a syrinx—the vocal organ of birds—its only vocalizations are grunts or low hisses. It nests in caves, hollow trees, or thickets and each year it generally raises two chicks. It has very few natural predators. In the United States, the vulture receives legal protection under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918.