Black Vulture

Coragyps atratus




New World Vultures (Cathartidae)

Code 4


Code 6



Egg Color:

Blue to gray green with brown or lavender markings

Number of Eggs:


Incubation Days:

37 - 48

Egg Incubator:

Both sexes

Nest Location:

On ground.

Nest Material:

No nest materials.


Some migrate



Black Vulture: Large raptor, black overall with short, featherless neck, pale bill, short and squared tail, and long, pale gray legs and feet. Gray-black skin on head and neck is wrinkled. Wings are white-tipped and held horizontal in flight. Sexes are similar.

Range and Habitat

Black Vulture: Resident species in much of the southeastern states from Texas to New York and Connecticut. It also occurs in southern Arizona, throughout much of Mexico and south into the tropics. Its range is expanding further into the northeast. Its preferred habitats include open country, but they breed in woodlands and thickets.

Breeding and Nesting

Black Vulture: Two blue to gray-green eggs marked with brown and lavender are laid in a cave, hollow log, stump, tree trunk, or abandoned building, with no nest materials added. Incubation ranges from 37 to 48 days and is carried out by both parents.

Foraging and Feeding

Black Vulture: Diet consists primarily of carrion. Sometimes attacks and kills prey.


Black Vulture: Usually silent but makes grumbling, barking, and hissing noises when competing for food.

Similar Species

Black Vulture: Turkey Vulture has bare red head, long rectangular tail, and 2-toned wings from below (black in front with silver-gray trailing edge), and hold wings in shallow "V” when soaring.

Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X