Did you know that Friday is International Vulture Awareness Day? Are you wondering why vulture's need an entire day of recognition? Good, because Ian Joplin, a raptor technician with Last Chance Forever, has the answer.
"You can imagine if you breathe the air coming from a rotting deer on the side of the road or if were to wash into our water supply it could make you and I sick, but they’re able to eat that material and destroy, remove the toxic elements and help keep the Earth clean," Joplin said.
He'll be leading an educational program at Eisenhower Park on Saturday in honor of the scavenging bird's day of awareness.
If the fact that they act as key parts of nature's cleaning crew isn't good enough for you, Joplin says vultures are pretty much harmless.
"They’re not dangerous birds, they have no way of protecting themselves other than throwing up," he said.
Sounds gross, but, when you think about it, says Joplin: "If you’re going to have an encounter with a wild animal, it’s probably better to be thrown up on than bit or clawed."
Vultures have such powerful digestive systems that they can eat a cow killed by anthrax and destroy the poison.
“They clean the Earth, they eat the dead decaying and rotting material, toxic things," Joplin said. "They’re helping to clean the earth by consuming that material, stuff that would make you or I ill.”
So, if you can give them a chance, Joplin wants you to head out to Eisenhower Park tomorrow for international vulture awareness day.
(© 2016 KENS)