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Visual fields, foraging and collision vulnerability in Gyps vultures  

Author:  | Wildlife

Abstract:
The visual fields of vultures contain a small binocular region and large blind areas above, below and behind the head. Head positions typically adopted by foraging vultures suggest that these visual fields provide comprehensive visual coverage of the ground below, prohibit the eyes from imaging the sun and provide extensive visual coverage laterally. However, vultures will often be blind in the direction of travel. We conclude that by erecting structures such as wind turbines, which extend into open airspace, humans have provided a perceptual challenge that the vision of foraging vultures cannot overcome.

Graham R. Martin, School of Biosciences, University of Birmingham, U.K.
Steven J. Portugal, Structure and Motion Laboratory, The Royal Veterinary College, North Mymms, Hatfield, Hertfordshire, U.K.
Campbell P. Murn, Hawk Conservancy Trust, Sarson Lane, Weyhill, Andover, Hampshire, U.K.

Ibis: The International Journal of Avian Science
Volume 154, Issue 3, July 2012, Pages 626-631
doi: 10.1111/j.1474-919X.2012.01227.x

Download original document: “Visual fields, foraging and collision vulnerability in Gyps vultures

This material is the work of the author(s) indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

The copyright of this material resides with the author(s). As part of its noncommercial effort to present the environmental, social, scientific, and economic issues of large-scale wind power development to a global audience seeking such information, National Wind Watch endeavors to observe “fair use” as provided for in section 107 of U.S. Copyright Law and similar “fair dealing” provisions of the copyright laws of other nations. Send queries to query/wind-watch.org.

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