Many people don't realize that Vultures are a very valuable part of our ecosystem. Vultures also have some incredible traits that keep them in a class all to themselves. Here are a few of my favorite facts.
1) Vultures have incredibly strong stomach acid, almost 100 times more potent than that of a human. This allows them to eat some very nasty things like Botulism and Cholera without getting sick. In fact this is one of the more important facts in the species. Vultures help control the spread of these deceases to humans by consuming carrion and cleaning the landscape of garbage.
2) The Bone-Eating or Bearded Vulture is one intense bird. It lives on a steady diet of bones and dyes its feathers blood red, giving it the reputation of one of the most metal birds in the animal kingdom.
3) The Rüppell's Griffon and is the highest recorded flying bird at 37,900 feet above mean sea level. They don't usually fly that high but many griffons do soar many thousand feet up in the sky. Infact they are routinely seen cruising over the Himalayas. They are also one of the species that partake in the Sky Burial (more on that later).
While this is only a few of my favorite facts regarding vultures, they are a vital part of our earth and need our protection. In many parts of the world they are killed for being dirty and gross while other countries murder them for their bones to practice Voodoo rituals in any event they are dwindling in numbers and should be treated with respect. Now in recent years in many parts of the world we are seeing a rise in old world diseases like Cholera and mass outbreaks of botulisms. Many scientists attribute this to the shrinking number of wild vultures.