My gym occupies a location of dubious Feng Shui in the rear of a large Asian shopping center at the county line, surrounded by decrepit garden apartments and automotive businesses. When you emerge from what I have dubbed the anus of Ch’i on the secondary road and jog through the signal, you often find yourself idling on an uphill grade, waiting for traffic on the main road.
There was a massive bird on the lawn of the two-story apartment complex, surveying the scene with a cant of the head that bespoke actively turning mental cogs. At first, I thought it might be another raven, like the one who periodically visits my garden. Then a short strutting motion emphasized an almost anseriforme curve to the neck, and I guessed it for one of the Canada geese that flock periodically hereabouts, provoking general annoyance and calls to the Geese Police.
Then a couple cars ahead of me turned right at the light, and I came level with a great big motherf*&king Black Vulture. He (or she) was not actively vultching but it forced me to the question of what, in that neighborhood, might be the attraction.
Wikipedia tells me they are known to scavenge garbage.
The entry also notes that they occasionally regurgitate when approached, “which assists in predator deterrence,” and are prone to crapping on their own legs as a means of evaporative cooling. Charming creatures.
“Black Vultures have sometimes been seen to pick ticks off resting Capybaras,” says Wikipedia helpfully.
I must remember to mention this to any capybara that comes in to work out.