The Queens County Bird Club will be meeting at the Alley Pond Environmental 
Center, 228-06 Northern Blvd Douglaston, NY 11362   >Map of location< 
<>  at 8:00 pm this Wednesday, June 20, 2018.  Free 
admission.  Refreshments served.

Katie Fallon will present “Vulture:  The Private Life of an Unloved Bird”.  
Katie is traveling from West Virginia to meet with us - I hope you will join us 
in giving her a warm welcome.  

        Turkey vultures, the most widely distributed and abundant scavenging 
birds of prey on the planet, are found from central Canada to the southern tip 
of Argentina, and nearly everywhere in between. But despite being ubiquitous 
and recognizable, the turkey vulture has never had a book of literary 
nonfiction devoted to it—until Vulture: the Private Life of an Unloved Bird by 
Katie Fallon.
     Floating on six-foot wings, turkey vultures use their keen senses of smell 
and sight to locate carrion. Unlike the black vulture, turkey vultures do not 
kill weak or dying animals; instead, they cleanse, purify, and renew the 
environment by clearing it of decaying carcasses, thus slowing the spread of 
such dangerous pathogens as anthrax, rabies, and botulism. The beauty, grace, 
and important role of these birds in the ecosystem notwithstanding, turkey 
vultures are maligned and underappreciated; they have been accused of spreading 
disease and killing livestock, neither of which has ever been substantiated. 
Although turkey vultures are protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, the 
birds still face persecution. They’ve been killed because of their looks, their 
odor, and their presence in proximity to humans. Even the federal government 
occasionally sanctions “roost dispersals,” which involve the harassment and 
sometimes the murder of communally roosting vultures.
     Vulture follows a year in the life of a typical North American turkey 
vulture. By incorporating information from scientific papers and articles, as 
well as interviews with world-renowned raptor and vulture experts, author Katie 
Fallon examines all aspects of the bird’s natural history: breeding, incubating 
eggs, raising chicks, migrating, and roosting. After reading this book you will 
never look at a vulture in the same way again.
     Katie Fallon is the cofounder of the Avian Conservation Center of 
Appalachia, a nonprofit research, education, and rehabilitation center for 
injured birds.  A member of the International Association of Avian Trainers and 
Educators, she has glove-trained a wide variety of raptor species, including 
turkey vultures, hawks, owls, and falcons.  She is the author of Cerulean 
Blues:  A personal Search for a Vanishing Songbird.  Katie lives in West 
     Copies of Katie’s books will be available for sale at the meeting.

Nancy Tognan 
Vice President, Queens County Bird Club 

 See for more information on trips, speakers, and 
other events.

See our 'Birding Maps & Locations' page for directions to and info about many 
local birding hotspots

* QCBC is a tax exempt, charitable organization {501c3}.  *

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