Visual fields, foraging and collision vulnerability in Gyps vultures
Article first published online: 12 MAR 2012
© 2012 The Authors. Ibis © 2012 British Ornithologists’ Union
Volume 154, Issue 3, pages 626–631, July 2012
How to Cite
MARTIN, G. R., PORTUGAL, S. J. and MURN, C. P. (2012), Visual fields, foraging and collision vulnerability in Gyps vultures. Ibis, 154: 626–631. doi: 10.1111/j.1474-919X.2012.01227.x
- Issue published online: 21 JUN 2012
- Article first published online: 12 MAR 2012
- Received 12 October 2011; revision accepted 8 February 2012. Associate Editor: Ian Hartley.
- binocular vision;
- blind area;
- Gyps africanus;
- Gyps fulvus;
- visual fields;
- wind turbines
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.