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#1046235 - 12/14/07 11:04 AM Do buzzards eat dead skunks?
JAG Offline


Registered: 10/23/05
Posts: 4550
Loc: Fredericksburg, VA
I drove over a dead skunk today and while intoxicated by the stench, I wondered if the stench is bad enough that buzzards won't even eat it. What do you think? I bet they do. It probably smells better than some of the rotting corpses they eat. Are any of you eyewitnesses to buzzards eating dead skunks?
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#1046251 - 12/14/07 11:24 AM Re: Do buzzards eat dead skunks? [Re: JAG]
ToyotaNSaturn Offline


Registered: 04/11/03
Posts: 11279
Loc: Spring Hill, TN
Do power-hungry & self-serving politicians prey on the poor of society?
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#1046258 - 12/14/07 11:30 AM Re: Do buzzards eat dead skunks? [Re: ToyotaNSaturn]
csandste Offline


Registered: 05/31/02
Posts: 910
Loc: St. Peters, Missouri
http://thelibrary.springfield.missouri.org/lochist/periodicals/bittersweet/wi79g.htm


"Dead skunks are a favorite food of buzzards, possibly because of their strong odor. They will eat snakes when available. Sometimes one can see a buzzard flying through the air with a snake dangling in its grasp. Any dead animal is fair game to a buzzard, though no other animal will eat the dead carcass of a buzzard, not even another buzzard."

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#1046262 - 12/14/07 11:33 AM Re: Do buzzards eat dead skunks? [Re: csandste]
JAG Offline


Registered: 10/23/05
Posts: 4550
Loc: Fredericksburg, VA
Wow, that's interesting. Thanks!
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#1046323 - 12/14/07 12:56 PM Re: Do buzzards eat dead skunks? [Re: JAG]
kargo27 Offline


Registered: 12/20/06
Posts: 203
Loc: Ft Worth, TX
That IS interesting. So buzzards won't eat other dead buzzards.

Can't say that I blame them.
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#1046335 - 12/14/07 01:17 PM Re: Do buzzards eat dead skunks? [Re: kargo27]
MarkC Offline


Registered: 07/10/03
Posts: 9461
Loc: Not Seattle, but close.
By buzzards, do you mean Turkey Vultures?
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#1046385 - 12/14/07 02:24 PM Re: Do buzzards eat dead skunks? [Re: MarkC]
kargo27 Offline


Registered: 12/20/06
Posts: 203
Loc: Ft Worth, TX
Mark, yes, Turkey Vultures.

I like them. They do provide a nice environmental service.

I drive to west Texas a lot for business and there are dozens of dead animals of all kinds...deer, skunks, opossums, racoons, coyotes, porcupines, etc. that are hit by cars. That's a lot of protein to be turned into maggots and flies.

The buzzards do great work in keeping some of the fly population down.
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#1046426 - 12/14/07 04:02 PM Re: Do buzzards eat dead skunks? [Re: kargo27]
Al Offline


Registered: 06/08/02
Posts: 17079
Loc: Elizabethtown, Pa
I don't think they eat lawyers. ;\)
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#1046430 - 12/14/07 04:11 PM Re: Do buzzards eat dead skunks? [Re: Al]
Shannow Offline


Registered: 12/12/02
Posts: 35692
Loc: Oz
Al, that's not bad.

I think that nothing will eat a dead fox either. At least nothing in Oz will gnaw on a dead fox.
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#1046458 - 12/14/07 05:01 PM Re: Do buzzards eat dead skunks? [Re: Shannow]
Jaybird Offline


Registered: 07/08/05
Posts: 608
Loc: So. IN
Buzzards will eat anything with entrails.
When I was a kid, my pal and I ran about 50 steel traps together.

Some species will chew their foot off before giving in to the trap. Especially skunks and foxes. But on occasion a skunk will give in, which is not a great thing for the young trapper. The buzzards will have the trap picked clean in just a day or so, and the rest will subside in about a month...if it rains a couple times at least.
Thing is, traps that have had skunk in them always prove to be the most productive later on. (shrug) A good side to all things, I s'pose.

There is a buzzard roost of about 60-70 birds not far from here. They claim a couple of HT towers. Nasty places, those.
Buzzard habits are not for the weak stomach to discuss.
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#1046674 - 12/14/07 11:42 PM Re: Do buzzards eat dead skunks? [Re: JAG]
Pablo Offline


Registered: 10/28/02
Posts: 47126
Loc: Duvall WA - Pacific NW USA
Oh to ponder the pondering of the many questions asked on BITOG.

I'll pass on getting a full sensual partaking of this thread. If you don't mind, that is.

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#1046677 - 12/14/07 11:51 PM Re: Do buzzards eat dead skunks? [Re: Pablo]
TallPaul Offline


Registered: 10/22/03
Posts: 13114
Loc: By Detroit
Some good info on vultures and describes the distinction between vultures and buzzards:

http://vulturesociety.homestead.com/TVFacts.html
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#1046678 - 12/14/07 11:51 PM Re: Do buzzards eat dead skunks? [Re: Pablo]
Shannow Offline


Registered: 12/12/02
Posts: 35692
Loc: Oz
Jaybird, I'll bet that there's money in that roosting bird guano.
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#1046719 - 12/15/07 03:20 AM Re: Do buzzards eat dead skunks? [Re: Shannow]
Jaybird Offline


Registered: 07/08/05
Posts: 608
Loc: So. IN
Hmmm...
I haven't investigated to see if it's true, but I hear they don't have a "guano" hole, if you will.

I think it may be regurgitation, that is their preferred method of excreting.
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#1046839 - 12/15/07 10:12 AM Re: Do buzzards eat dead skunks? [Re: Jaybird]
MarkC Offline


Registered: 07/10/03
Posts: 9461
Loc: Not Seattle, but close.
That's a myth.THey do indeed have an anus--or a cloaca. They often urinate or defeccate on their legs to cool themselves.
They do regurgitate food if startled, as a defense mechanism.
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