Friday, July 8, 2011

Almost ready to fly...

Checked on my baby turkey vultures and over the last week their wings have really started to fill out.  I don't think they can generate enough lift yet but I suspect over the next week they will be branching.  Around the cave there is clear evidence that the two have been spending time outside (which is also new over the last week).  They are also substantially faster and move with more intensity (which makes it a little uncomfortable for me to check on them).  (bigger)

The complexity of the architecture in the head has also increased significantly over the last week.  The eye positioning muscles and the flexibility of the surrounding tissue is making it much easier for them to redirect their vision without moving their heads.  The outer skin is differentiating into more specialized areas as is the complexity of the internal tissues inside the mouth as nose.  The "ear" port is becoming more prominent as well.


At first I thought one was missing but when I got home I found the other one pressed towards the back of the cave.  One has always been protective and used to push the other towards the back of the cave - now it covers it with a wing.  I don't know why this is, but it's interesting to see such a difference in character.  I can never really stay long when I visit them because I don't want to cause problems or put them at risk so I can spend the time to observe their behavior as much as I want to...