Facebook pixel
turkey vulture-cathartes aura

Turkey Vulture Sightseeing on Everglades Airboat Tours

Turkey Vulture (Cathartes aura)
The turkey vulture, also referred to as the turkey buzzard in some North American regions, is the most widespread of the New World vultures. It is not closely related to Old World vultures of Europe, Africa and Asia. Turkey vultures use columns of rising air (thermals) to fly, flapping their wings infrequently. These are seen rather frequently aboard our Everglades airboat tour.


The turkey vulture has a large range, found from southern Canada to the southernmost tip of South America. It inhabits a variety of open and semi-open areas including subtropical forests, grasslands, shrublands, pastures, foothills, wetlands and deserts. Turkey vultures are known for roosting in large communities, nesting in caves, hollow trees or thickets.This habitat is widely experienced on our most popular Everglades National Park boat tours, group airboat tours, private airboat tours, or Miami airboat tours.

Size & Appearance

Turkey vultures are large birds with featherless heads and pale beaks. Their wingspans range between 63 and 72 inches and their body lengths between 24 and 32 inches. They weigh between 1.8 and 5.1 pounds. Birds in the species’ northern limit (including Florida) average larger in size than those found in the neotropics. Their body feathers are mainly brownish-black, but they also have silvery flight feathers on the wings. If you ever go fishing aboard a Everglades boat, these are easily seen in the brush!


Turkey vultures are scavengers and their diets are almost solely made up of carrion – dead and decaying flesh of animals. They find their food using their keen eyes and sense of smell, flying low enough to detect the gases produced by the beginning of dead animal’s decay processes. The turkey vulture has very few natural predators and rarely kills its own prey. Their prey and diet are seen widely aboard our Everglades excursion.

Fun Facts

  • The Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918 legally protects turkey vultures from unwarranted hunters and capturers.
  • The turkey vulture’s global population is estimated at 4.5 million individuals.
  • They may rarely be seen feeding on plant matter, shoreline vegetation, pumpkin, coconut and other crops.
  • Turkey vultures have no syrinx – bird’s vocal organs – so their only vocalizations are grunts and hisses.
  • Their scavenger diet plays an important role in the ecosystem, disposing of what otherwise might become breeding grounds for disease.
  • More About Everglades Holiday Park

    We offer a wide collection of services that gives people looking to experience a different ecosystem something completely different than what they are used to. Aboard our Everglades National Park airboat tours or Everglades boat tour, you and your family could experience something truly one of a kind. Contact us today to book your Everglades tour!
Join our eMailing List!

Sign-up to receive Park News, Special Event Info, Exclusive Discount Offers and more...

Animal Encounters at Everglades Holiday Park ANIMAL ENCOUNTERS - Experience a 45-minute Everglades animal encounter where you can pet, feed, and play with 5 wild, uncaged animals. Learn about alligators, tortoises, skunks, racoons, snakes, pigs, and more from our expert animal handlers!
Everglades VIP Tours EVERGLADES VIP TOURS - Sit back and relax as Everglades Holiday Park drives you to and from our park for the ultimate VIP Everglades airboat tour! Your VIP tour will be accompanied by a live alligator presentation, and FREE baby alligator and airboat group photos!
Group Airboat Tours GROUP AIRBOAT TOURS - If you're considering visiting Everglades Holiday Park with a group of 15 or more friends, we're pleased to offer a group rate for enjoying the Everglades together.
Private Airboat Tours at Everglades Holiday Park PRIVATE AIRBOAT TOURS - Experience the magic of the Everglades on a private airboat tour! Perfect for small groups of 2 or more, Everglades Holiday Park can customize your tour for a perfect mix of excitement, discovery, and leisure.
Everglades Birthday Parties at Everglades Holiday Park BIRTHDAY PARTIES - Plan an unforgettable birthday celebration at Everglades Holiday Park! Perfect for kids of all ages, our park offers exciting airboat tours, live alligator shows, animal encounters, and more!
Summer Camps Field Trips at Everglades Holiday Park SUMMER CAMP FIELD TRIPS - Everglades Holiday Park offers the perfect combination of education and entertainment. We can accommodate summer camp groups up to 150 guests! Come enjoy a 60-minute guided airboat tour, a live alligator presentation, outdoor activities, and our full-service deli and café.
Everglades School Trips at Everglades Holiday Park EVERGLADES SCHOOL FIELD TRIPS - Educate your students about Everglades preservation and exotic animals at Everglades Holiday Park! Our park is the perfect spot for an exciting and informative South Florida school field trip!
Shore Excursions at Everglades Holiday Park SHORE EXCURSIONS - Everglades Holiday Park is home to the best Everglades shore excursion. Conveniently located near Ft. Lauderdale, Miami and Palm Beach in Florida, you and your guests will create memories that will last a lifetime when you explore the majestic wonderland of the Everglades.