King

King vulture
Sarcoramphus papa

Taxonomy

  • Scientific name:

    Sarcoramphus papa

  • Family:

    Cathartidae

  • Genus:

    Sarcoramphus

  • Species:

    Papa

  • Common names:

    King vulture

Biology

  • Morphology:

    71 – 81.5 cm length, with a wingspan of aprox 1.93m and weighs between 8 y 14 kg. All his body is an ash black color, with mottled white auxiliary plumage. The skin shades of red and purple on the bald head, vivid orange on the neck and yellow on the throat.

  • Reproduction:

    Mate for life, nests in trunk cavities in lowlands and breed during dry season, laying a single white egg.

  • Diet:

    Feeds on carrion and tracks carcass through smell

Ecology

  • Range:

    From northeast Mexico to north Argentina.

  • Habitat:

    tropical lowland forest as well as savannas and grasslands near this type of forest

Threats

  • Illegal trafficking, deforestation, even intoxication due to contamination and eating poisoned animals.

    Risk Category: IUCN Red List: Least concern.