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Home » Information » Ruppell’s Griffon Vulture in Uganda (“Gyps rueppelli”)

Ruppell’s Griffon Vulture in Uganda (“Gyps rueppelli”)

Ruppell’s Griffon Vulture

What to Know About the Ruppell’s Griffon Vulture in Uganda?

The Ruppell’s Griffon Vulture in Uganda is one of the African birds in Uganda seen during Uganda birding safaris. It in Uganda is one of the African Uganda Birds seen during Birding Safaris. The endangered Ruppell’s griffon vulture is the highest-flying bird ever recorded, and it can ascend to heights of 37,000 feet.

That’s the average height at which a commercial airplane travels (and a Ruppell’s griffon vulture has indeed been sucked into a jet engine at 37,000 feet).

It is also the height at which a human would pass out from lack of oxygen. The vulture doesn’t face this problem because it has developed a particular type of hemoglobin, making their use of oxygen more effective.

A close competitor is the bar-headed goose, a species that migrates over the Himalayan mountains at heights of 18,000-21,120 feet.

It’s been reported they’ve even been seen flying over Mount Makalu, the fifth highest mountain on earth at 27,825 feet.

How Does the Ruppell’s Griffon Vulture in Uganda Look Like?

These are large vultures, noticeably outsizing the closely related white-backed vulture, with which they often co-occur in the wild.

Adults are 85 to 103 cm long, with a wingspan of 2.26 to 2.6metres, and a weight that ranges from 6.4 to 9 kg.

Both genders look alike: mottled brown or black overall with a whitish-brown underbelly and thin, dirty-white fluff covering the head and neck.

The base of the neck has a white collar, the eye is yellow or amber, the crop patch deep brown. Silent as a rule, they become vocal at their nest and when at a carcass, squealing a great deal.

How Does the Ruppell’s Griffon Vulture in Uganda Sing and Make Calls?

Silent as a rule, they become vocal at their nest and when at a carcass, squealing a great deal.

How Does the Ruppell’s Griffon Vulture in Uganda Feed?

Rüppell’s vultures have several adaptations to their diet and are specialized feeders even among the Old-World vultures of Africa.

They have an especially powerful build and, after the most attractive soft parts of a carcass have been consumed, they will continue with the hide, and even the bones, gorging themselves until they can barely fly.

They have backward-pointing spikes on the tongue to help remove meat from bone.

How Does the Ruppell’s Griffon Vulture in Uganda Nest?

After courtship the pair will work together to build a nest using sticks, grass, and leaves that they have gathered or stolen from other nests.

Rüppell’s vultures build these nests on cliffs, and in key breeding areas they are known to nest in large colonies containing hundreds of breeding pairs.

How Does the Ruppell’s Griffon Vulture in Uganda Breed?

This species of vulture is considered to be monogamous, forming lifelong breeding pairs.

How Does the Ruppell’s Griffon Vulture in Uganda Reproduce?

Both parents share in incubation of their egg over a period of 55 days. Once the chick hatches, both parents will feed and tend to it for about 150 days when it fledges.

Young remain dependent on their parents after fledging, not reaching independence until the next breeding season. During this time, they learn how to find and compete for food.

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